When is MLB Opening Day 2016?

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Apr 6, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; General view of Opening Day before the game between the Detroit Tigers and the Minnesota Twins at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 6, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; General view of Opening Day before the game between the Detroit Tigers and the Minnesota Twins at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /
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When is MLB Opening Day 2016? Glad you asked, the season officially kicks off on Sunday, April 3rd, 2016. However, the more important game comes a few days later when the Detroit Tigers kick off the team’s season on the road against the Miami Marlins.

Spring Training is in the midst of winding down, and the calendar will soon turn to April. That can only mean that Opening Day is almost upon us.

While the Detroit Tigers wrap things up in Lakeland, all of the eyes in the baseball world will be on the division-rival Kansas City Royals and the New York Mets on April 3rd. Last year’s two World Series participants will open the season off with a bang in a primetime matchup from Kansas City. The game will be on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball, and will surely draw a large crowd.

The more important game is on Tuesday—well, Tuesday night to be exact.

Detroit’s Opening Day Game

The Detroit Tigers will open up regular season play on the road in Miami against the team formerly known as the Florida Marlins. Miami is coming off a 2015 season that saw the team win just 71 games. While that number isn’t far off from Detroit’s win total (74) last season, the Tigers have a healthy Justin Verlander and Miguel Cabrera, not to mention new offseason additions in Jordan Zimmermann and Justin Upton. The Marlins, meanwhile, added Wei-Yin Chen and little else. 

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As it was announced earlier in Spring Training by manager Brad Ausmus, Verlander will take the hill Miami to face the Fish. Pitching opposite Verlander for the home team on Opening Day will not be Jose Fernandez. Instead, it will be Chen who opposes the Cy Young award winner.

The Detroit ace is coming off a highly successful spring that saw him notch a 2.84 ERA while holding batters to a .225 batting average in 19 innings pitched.

It will be Verlander’s eighth Opening Day nod. Since the game will be played in a National League ballpark, the pitchers will bat. This means JV will get a handful of chances to improve upon his .063 career batting average. Verlander’s only two hits came in 2014. To his credit, he did have a 0.1 WAR at the plate that season. Because of time missed due to injury and scheduling, the longtime Tiger didn’t get a chance to hit last season.

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Pitching for the Marlins will be Chen, who to this point had spent his entire career with the Baltimore Orioles. With the American League East club, the 30-year-old faced the Tigers three times. It is safe to say that the three starts are ones Chen would like to have back. In 14.1 innings pitched, the veteran has allowed 19 hits, 12 runs (all earned), five home runs and four walks against Detroit.

For more Detroit Tigers News, check out our Detroit Tigers news hub page.

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