Who should be the Opening Day Starter for the Red Sox?
The Boston Red Sox will head into the 2017 season with a great problem to have, who should be the Opening Day starter? The Red Sox now have a big 3 when it comes to starting pitching, with Chris Sale, David Price, and Rick Porcello.
All three pitchers have the credentials to be named Opening Day starter, it comes down to the matter of what manager John Farrell would want the rotation to look like beyond Opening Day. Usually the pitcher named Opening Day starter is the best pitcher on the team’s roster, or the ace of the staff. In this case, the Red Sox have a trio of aces, and the reigning Cy Young Award winner, who is not even the best pitcher in the rotation since they acquired Sale.
Chris Sale made a statement during the Winter Meetings saying, “out of respect, you’ve got to go with Porcello — he was the best pitcher in the league last year. How do you deny that?”
David Price also raved about Porcello when he was asked who he might think the Opening Day starter will be, “I’m a believer it’s something that’s earned. If I have a vote, I’m voting for Rick.”
The trio of aces all have their reasons to receive the honor of getting the nod on Opening Day.
Rick Porcello went 22-4 with a 3.15 ERA last year and is coming off a Cy Young award winning season. He is the most deserving pitcher on the staff to open the gates atop the Red Sox rotation. There were many arguments that Porcello might not have deserved the Cy Young last season, but with 22 wins and the fifth best ERA in the American League, he had the best season of his career, and came back from a rough first season with the Red Sox.
David Price was the Opening Day starter for the Red Sox in the 2016 season after signing a 7-year, $217,000,000 contract. Although he did not live up to the money he received and his ace role (3.99 ERA), he still won 17 games for the Sox and pitched the second most innings of his career (230). The 230 innings gave the bullpen rest last season as Price pitched deep into ball games just like he has throughout his career.
Chris Sale is the best pitcher on the Red Sox, and arguably the best pitcher in the American League. He has finished top-6 in Cy Young voting in each of the past five seasons, but unlike Price and Porcello, Sale has yet to win the award. Sale should be the Opening Day starter for the Red Sox because he is the best pitcher on the team.
No matter who the Red Sox name their Opening Day starter, all three aces will look to pitch the Red Sox into the postseason, in an effort to bring the World Series trophy back to Boston.