Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Major League Baseball starts anew on Sunday, with six teams in action to start the regular season, including World Series rematch between the Kansas City Royals and New York Mets. But the matchups all day are really good.
The Cardinals and Pirates formally open the season at Pittsburgh’s PNC Park at 1:05 p.m. ET, putting together the teams with the two highest win totals in baseball last season. (The Cardinals won 100 games, and the Pirates won 98.) The NL Central has been tight between these teams for three years in a row, and they’ll probably compete for it — along with the Chicago Cubs, of course — again in 2016.
Later in the afternoon, the Tampa Bay Rays host the Toronto Blue Jays. The Boston Red Sox are the AL East favorites, but either the Rays or Jays (or Yankees or Orioles, really) could plausibly make a run at what should be a fairly open division. Marcus Stroman pitches for Toronto against Chris Archer for Tampa Bay, giving fans a chance to watch two fireballers who should have huge seasons.
The Royals and Mets are the nightcap, as New York tries to exact a very small measure of revenge on Kansas City for last year’s Fall Classic. Matt Harvey starts for the Mets against Edinson Volquez for the Royals, which is — perhaps coincidentally, perhaps not — an exact rematch of Game 5 in the World Series. That being when Harvey pitched a shutout for eight innings but couldn’t hold the fort in the ninth, as Kansas City tied the game and later won it.
So, Sunday’s games feature lots of talent and lots of subtext. Here’s how to watch them. All times are ET:
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30 Years of Stats: What the Royals went through between World Series titles
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