Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Champion Giants open vs. rival on rebound

LOS ANGELES — It won't take long for the Dodgers to find out how their $215 million payroll stacks up against baseball's elite.

They'll test it out starting today (4 p.m., ESPN) against the World Series champion Giants, as former Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw, a left-hander, makes his third straight opening-day start against righty Matt Cain.

"They are definitely the team to beat," Kershaw said of Los Angeles' long-time rival. "We can talk about it until we're blue in the face, but until we start winning some games and be in first place for the majority of the season, there's really not much we can say about it."

San Francisco is favored by some to win the NL West again. The Dodgers finished second last year but the Giants knocked them out of wild-card contention in the next-to-the-last game of the regular season.

"We're pretty excited to be playing against the World Series champs, and hopefully we can come out and play the game we know how to play," slugger Matt Kemp said. "It is a rivalry, but that's more for the fans, not for us."

The Giants enter the season with two World Series titles in three years, and they return all their key players.

"I have to feel good about it because they did a good job last year, they did a great job," manager Bruce Bochy said.

The Dodgers are missing SS Hanley Ramirez, who is on the 15-day disabled list after thumb surgery. Pitchers Chad Billingsley, Scott Elbert and Ted Lilly are also on the DL.

Los Angeles enters its first full season with big-name midseason acquisitions Carl Crawford, the former Ray recovering from elbow surgery, Adrian Gonzalez, Ramirez, Josh Beckett and closer Brandon League.

As for one of San Francisco's injury concerns, Bochy told the San Jose Mercury News that the team was "pretty optimistic" that 3B Pablo Sandoval (right elbow) would play today.

Another historic rivalry renews today in New York as the Yankees open against the Red Sox (1 p.m., ESPN) with CC Sabathia facing Boston's Jon Lester.

Interleague intrigue: The oldest franchise in the majors will be the first to test out baseball's newest wrinkle. Today when the Angels play at Cincinnati, the Reds will not only welcome back slugger Josh Hamilton but also host the first interleague game on opening day. Nearly every day will see at least one interleague game this season, a change triggered by Houston's move to the AL to give each league 15 teams. "It is very strange," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "This usually doesn't happen until June or July."

Newtown tribute: All 30 teams will pay tribute to the 20 children and six adults shot to death in December at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. Players, managers, coaches and umpires will wear a memorial patch through Tuesday that includes the seal of Newtown, a black ribbon and 26 stars, and there will be a moment of silence at each stadium.

Braves: LHP Jonny Venters (sprained elbow) went on the 15-day DL; the team purchased the contract of C Evan Gattis.

Diamondbacks: Injuries opened the way for OF Alfredo Marte and INF Josh Wilson to make the opening-day roster. RHP Randall Delgado was optioned to Triple-A Reno.

Mariners: They designated Casper Wells, instead keeping Jason Bay as the fifth outfielder.

Red Sox: OF Jackie Bradley, 22, who has never played above Double A, was named to the roster. Bradley, taken 40th overall in the 2011 amateur draft, hit .419 with a .507 on-base percentage in spring. INF Mauro Gomez was designated for assignment.

Reds: Righty relievers Logan Ondrusek and Jose Arredondo were sent to the minors.

Royals: Former AL MVP Miguel Tejada was added and LHP Danny Duffy (Tommy John surgery) went on the DL. Duffy is expected to be out until midseason.

Champion Giants open vs. rival on rebound 03/31/13 [Last modified: Sunday, March 31, 2013 10:28pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Yellow cards stall Rowdies offense in tie with St. Louis


    ST. PETERSBURG — It's not the result they wanted, but it certainly could have been worse. Neill Collins' 87th-minute header off a corner kick was the reward the Rowdies settled for Saturday night during a 1-1 draw with St. Louis before an announced 6,068 at Al Lang Stadium.

  2. Calvary Christian routs Pensacola Catholic to win state baseball title


    FORT MYERS — Calvary Christian left no doubt as to which baseball team in Class 4A was the best in Florida this season. The Warriors defeated Pensacola Catholic 11-1 in six innings Saturday night at Hammond Stadium to claim the school's first state championship in any team sport. It also solidified a 30-0 season. …

    Matheu Nelson celebrates after scoring on a wild pitch during the first inning, when Calvary Christian took a 6-0 lead.
  3. Numerous lapses add up to frustrating Rays loss to Twins

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — While the Rays made some good defensive plays, threw a couple of big pitches when they needed to and got a few, and just a few, key hits, there were some obvious things they did wrong that led to them losing Saturday's game to the Twins 5-3:

    Rays reliever Tommy Hunter says the Twins’ tiebreaking homer came on a pitch that was “close to where I wanted it.”
  4. Rays journal: Steven Souza Jr. laughing right along after comical dive

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Souza being Souza.

    That seemed to be the best way to describe the entertaining — and comically bad — dive Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. attempted in Friday's game, and the good humor he showed in handling the fallout, including a standing ovation his next at-bat from the …

  5. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Twins game

    The Heater

    RHP Jake Odorizzi had to battle without his best stuff again, which is becoming a more common occurrence, leading to long at-bats — including 13 pitches to Kennys Vargas in the fifth — and running up his pitch count to 118 without finishing the sixth.