Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Marcus Stroman has been selected to start the season opener against the visiting Detroit Tigers on March 28. Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said he initially was considering right-hander Aaron Sanchez as well before deciding Stroman was the best fit for the Opening Day start.
It will be Stroman's second Opening Day start. He got the nod against the host Tampa Bay Rays in 2016 and recorded the victory, giving up three runs and six hits over eight innings. "It's an honor," Stroman told reporters on Wednesday. "It's something you always strive for. It's something I always pride myself on and I'm just excited. Excited to feel that electricity, that energy of Toronto, of Canada, when I get out there on the mound.
"I've pitched in some pretty big moments before. I'm not shy of the moment. I think I thrive off energy and emotion so I'm excited. I can't wait to be out there." Stroman, who turns 28 in May, is coming off a shaky campaign in which he went 4-9 with a 5.54 ERA in 19 starts. He missed time due to shoulder and blister issues.
Overall, Stroman is 41-34 with a 3.91 ERA in 114 career appearances (108 starts).
(With inputs from agencies.)