The beginning of the MLB 2022 season has lastly arrived!
Beginning with seven video games on Thursday’s opening day and persevering with with the remainder of MLB in motion on Friday, it is time to welcome a brand new 12 months in diamonds. To have fun the return of baseball, we requested our consultants to think about what they have been most excited to observe—and predict a gritty opening day.
As soon as the video games begin, you’ll want to replace this web page early and sometimes to get our dwell updates and takeaways from each sport on Opening Day Thursday and Friday.
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Thursday opening day schedule
All occasions are oriental
2:20 p.m.: Brewers (Burns) at CAPS (Hendrix)
4:10 pm: Guardians (Bieber) at Royals (Greinke)
4:15 p.m.: Pirates (Brubecker) at Cardinals (Wainwright)
7:05 p.m. on ESPN+: Mets (TBD) at Nationals (Corbin)
8:00 p.m. on ESPN2: Reds (Mahle) at Braves (Fried)
9:38 p.m.: Astros (Valdez) at Angels (Ohtani)
9:40 p.m.: Padres (Darvish) on the Diamondbacks (Bumgarner)
Friday Openers: Pink Sox-Yankees, White Sox-Tigers, A’s-Phillies, Orioles-Rays, Dodgers-Rockies, Mariners-Twins, Marlins-Giants, Rangers-Blue Jays
Opening Day Predictions And What We Cannot Wait To See
What are you most excited to see on opening day?
Bradford Doolittle: I am in Minneapolis for the Twins-Mariners sequence which has been postponed every day on account of some inhospitable spring climate. The upside is that I will have two opening days and may watch the Kansas Metropolis debut of Bobby Witt Jr. on some form of display screen on Thursday earlier than watching Julio Rodriguez from Seattle on Friday. We did not all the time see probably the most thrilling prospect on opening day (Witt is quantity two and Rodriguez is quantity three on Kelly McDaniel’s Prime 100 Potential Shoppers record), in order that’s fairly cool. The race for the MLS Participant of the Yr award has begun.
Jesse Rogers: The debut of the beginner woman Seiya Suzuki from the Cubs. He’s a multi-tool participant who has the ability in all areas and a rocket with an arm. As famous within the current CPA battle, most rookies do not make some huge cash—however Suzuki signed a five-year, $85 million contract this offseason, so all eyes will likely be on him all through the baseball world. He has an opportunity to be the subsequent massive star in a staff abruptly devoid of them. Thursday is his first probability to indicate followers throughout town of Chicago what they’re getting.
David Schoenefeld: The Padres is likely to be the good staff to observe in April. There may be plenty of stress on a staff that now runs one of many highest payrolls in baseball and is coming off a dropping season. They collapsed on the stretch, and whereas the rotation is wholesome once more, Padres must play two months with out Fernando Tates Jr. So on opening day, I wish to see what Yo Darvish seems to be like after going 1-8 (6.16 PM) within the second half. I wish to see how new supervisor Bob Melvin units up a bullpen late within the sport. I wish to see if Ha-Seong Kim cannot solely fill in Tatis’ answer however have as profitable as he did in Korea after struggling in his first debut season. I wish to see which mani Machado seems. The Padres begin with 14 video games in opposition to the Diamondbacks, Giants, Rangers and Pirates – a golden alternative to get off to a sizzling begin and put the frustration of 2021 behind them.
John Lee: I am with David on this. The Padres are at an excellent inflection level in AJ Preller’s tenure with Tatis injured and the extent of monetary funding on the coronary heart of this staff. Based on a number of sources, Padres’ membership chemistry has suffered beneath Jayce Tingler, so including Melvin will utterly shake up the staff’s locker room dynamics. I am to see which of the Darvish will seem on opening day and the way former Cy Younger winner Blake Snell excels in his second season in San Diego after struggling to set related numbers for his tenure in Tampa Bay. Particularly after the failure of Eric Hosmer’s deal and the damage of Tates, the staff will want high-paid gamers to play higher in 2022.
Buster Olney: I am in Atlanta, and can be intrigued to see the reception for brand spanking new First Base Officer Matt Olson – and I count on it to be boisterous and perpetual. If anybody goes to exchange Freddy Freeman initially, Olson is the right candidate given his home roots, age, and power. If the magical situation for the Braves from final 12 months’s World Championships nonetheless performs out, Olson could have a pivotal success — and Atlanta followers will go wild. What a narrative it will likely be
Cole Harvey: I am so excited to affix Buster in my hometown of Atlanta, the place I will be sitting entrance row to crown a era within the making. As a lifelong supporter of every thing ATL, 404, Chick-fil-A, and Waffle Home, the 10-year-old inside me nonetheless could not imagine that one of many professional groups from his hometown was about to get one other banner-raising evening. The 1995 and 2021 Braves championships and the MLS title for Atlanta United in 2018 are all we’ve! After 28-3 memes and jokes, the hate-packed metropolis deserves greater than it deserves to have fun successful the World Championships final October once more. The Atlanteans deserved it.
Alden Gonzalez: I will likely be at Angle Stadium on Thursday, and due to that I would be the luckiest of all. Shohei Ohtani will likely be up the mound and will likely be within the squad, beginning what guarantees to be one other charming season as a two-way participant. The dialog about Angel Camp this spring revolved round whether or not Otani might actually be higher This 12 months, given how he is developed as a pitcher and the way he is develop into snug with the duo position because the season has progressed. It appears unattainable – till you notice how particular this man is.
Tim Keon: The Mets bought Max Scherzer with Jacob deGrom, and their opening day begin was… Tylor Megill. Subsequent to JT Brubaker of Pirates, Megill is probably the most open-day off-day starter. Even Oakland has Frankie Montas, though there’s a probability to commerce earlier than Friday’s first pitch in Philadelphia. It won’t imply a lot – Scherzer must be again quickly, perhaps even for a second sport – however it positive feels like an omen.
Jeff Bassan: All due respect to Bobby Witt Jr., whose debut I will likely be watching in particular person, however the biggest present within the sport is performing at the moment on a distinct stage. For the primary of many occasions this season, Shohei Ohtani is spending his day within the prime half of innings and hitting the underside half. He’ll try this factor the place he is throwing 100mph and hitting 100mph rockets. His greatness is limitless. And as an added bonus on opening day, the Shohei Ohtani rule – which permits him to stay within the sport as a hitter after being plucked as a pitcher – will get her first spin.
It is time to name your shot: What’s your prediction for the lonely opening day positive Checks?
Doolittle: Albert Pujols goes to Homer in St. Louis. Even when it seems that he is the one Homer to hit all season, there is not any approach this might not occur. There are many younger Cardinals fans in St. Louis who solely heard of Pujols from their mother and father. It is nice to have them strive it out this 12 months as he transitions out of a Corridor of Fame profession.
Rogers: Corbin Burns will hit the Cubs as soon as – and Suzuki would be the solely hitter to hit it. Chicago has a bit left-handed pop, whereas right-handed opponents amassed a minuscule hit variety of .179 in 2021. With a participant hitting right-handed at first base and right-handed fielding—two positions typically assigned to left-power hits—- it will likely be The Cubs are at an obstacle in opposition to the highest proper all season. Making an attempt to hit Burns on Thursday, in 40-degree climate, will make issues much more tough.
Schoenefeld: Machado bought off to a gradual begin in 2021, however with Tatis out, the Padres want him to hit the bottom working. Diamondbacks Madison Bumgarner’s begin hasn’t hit properly throughout his profession (.212/.257/.515), despite the fact that three of his seven hits have been at dwelling. I say he went twice from Madboom whereas Padres wins the opening match.
Olney: He isn’t doing a present on opening day, however I will title that this would be the final 12 months that future Corridor of Famer Jacob deGrom will likely be with the Mets. Steve Cohen has proven he is keen and keen to spend money on any approach he feels may help the Mets, however there are plenty of variables concerned in DeGrom’s return — questions on his well being now, his well being progressing, and most significantly, what he desires. We’ll look again at his affirmation that he pulled out of his contract regardless of his current damage as the primary actual indication he is heading elsewhere.
Gonzalez: Each Rodriguez and Witt Jr. will likely be hitting dwelling runs of their first league appearances. The 2 head out what seems to be like this 12 months’s AL Rookie area is extremely deep, together with Spencer Torkelson. They are going to ultimately be joined by Adley Rutschman and Riley Greene. Not on this record: Wander Franco, who handed his junior eligibility final 12 months however will play in his first full season in 2022. He would be the largest star of all of them. The younger expertise within the sport is superb proper now – and I solely counted one league.
kyun: We’ll all point out that Mike Trout is just not solely there, however stays the most effective participant within the sport. The eyes of the sport will likely be on Shohei Otani to begin the Angels’ opening match in opposition to the Astros, however by the tip of the fourth or fifth inning, it will likely be trout evening.
Mine: Shohei Ohtani will come out of the gates robust on opening day, explaining that the previous 12 months hasn’t been a mirage and that it is potential to play at a excessive degree throughout a number of seasons – and opening up the concept groups can doubtlessly develop extra gamers in two instructions, not essentially at Ohtani’s degree, however to maximise the worth of Each place on the record.
Harvey: Nicely, Austin Riley’s presentation of the grapefruit affiliation wasn’t the strongest (.214, 6 vs. 28), however I am dealing fairly arduous with it on an enormous opening evening. This may occur in what will likely be his first match at Belief Park because the World Championships. Within the final postseason dwelling, he hit .419 (13 versus 31) with 5 further base strokes. He’ll capitalize on that hit success as soon as once more in entrance of one other raucous and frantic crowd from Atlanta, giving followers some late-night magic.
go: The final time we noticed Max Fried, he was throwing six spherical stops for Atlanta in a World Championship playoff sport. Previous to that, he had the bottom second-half time of any pitcher (1.74). In the present day, in entrance of a Truist Park crowd making ready to battle the world champions, Fried bought the ball rolling in opposition to a Cincinnati Reds who changed his greatest hitter amid an unsightly rip. All of this implies his lane will likely be 6 IP, 4 hits, 1 run, 1 earned run, 1 rally and 9 hits – and he’ll be in competitors with Cy Younger all season.