Nevermind that the San Francisco Giants are unlikely to knock in as many runs as a team as Giancarlo Stanton did in the first game of the night. Nevermind that the Los Angeles Dodgers are world beaters (in the regular season).
All that matters is that Opening Day is finally, finally here. Let’s get to it.
Who: San Francisco Giants vs. Los Angeles Dodgers
Where: Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, California
When: 7:08 p.m. PT
Regional broadcast: None
National broadcast: ESPN
Radio: KNBR 680 AM/104.5 FM
The Giants were all set to throw eight right-handed batters at Clayton Kershaw. And then the Dodgers put Kershaw on the Injured List on Thursday morning, and opted to send right-handed rookie Dustin May to the mound instead.
The Giants retooled their lineup, but it’s not as platoon heavy, as they’re running out just six left-handed hitters.
Here’s Gabe Kapler’s squad for his first game as Giants manager. All stats are from last year.
- CF — Mike Yastrzemski (L) — .272/.334/.518, 121 wRC+
- 3B — Wilmer Flores (R) — .317/.361/.487, 120 wRC+
- 1B — Pablo Sandoval (S) — .268/.313/.507, 110 wRC+
- LF — Alex Dickerson (L) — .276/.332/.489, 113 wRC+
- DH — Hunter Pence (R) — .297/.358/.552, 128 wRC+
- RF — Joe McCarthy (L) — N/A
- 2B — Mauricio Dubón (R) — .274/.306/.434, 95 wRC+
- SS — Brandon Crawford (L) — .228/.304/.350, 74 wRC+
- C — Tyler Heineman (S) — .273/.273/.636, 130 wRC+ (12 PAs)
RHP — Johnny Cueto — 5.06 ERA, 5.71 FIP, 13 Ks and 9 BBs in 16.0 innings
And here is the utterly terrifying crew that Dave Roberts is putting out:
- 1B — Max Muncy (L) — .251/..374/.515, 134 wRC+
- RF — Mookie Betts (R) — .295/.391/.524, 135 wRC+
- CF — Cody Bellinger (L) — .305/.406/.629, 162 wRC+
- 3B — Justin Turner (R) — .290/.372/.509, 132 wRC+
- SS — Corey Seager (L) — .272/.335/.483, 113 wRC+
- 2B — Kiké Hernández (R) — .237/.304/.411, 88 wRC+
- LF — Joc Pederson (L) — .249/.339/.538, 127 wRC+
- DH — A.J. Pollack (R) — .266/.327/.468, 108 wRC+
- C — Austin Barnes (R) — .203/.293/.340, 68 wRC+
RHP — Dustin May — 3.63 ERA, 2.90 FIP, 32 Ks, 5 BBs, 34.2 innings
Black Lives Matter: The players on both teams wore shirts that read “Black Lives Matter” while warming up prior to Opening Day.
Yes. Well done.
Hunter speeches: The last time Hunter Pence gave a pump-up speech, the Giants completed a wild comeback in the NLDS, and ended up winning the World Series.
Now he’s back at it, as Gabe Kapler revealed that he had Pence speak to the team prior to the opener.
Gabe Kapler had Hunter Pence address the team before batting practice today. #SFGiants.— Kerry Crowley (@KO_Crowley) July 24, 2020
“I turned it over to Hunter Pence who’s always good at inspiring people. Hunter has some of the most consistent, positive energy of anybody and he never wavers."
McCarthy debuts: It’s not all that common for players to make their Major League debut as an Opening Day starter, but between Kershaw’s injury and Brandon Belt’s, the doors opened up for Joe McCarthy. A fifth-round pick in 2015 by the Tampa Bay Rays, the unfortunately-named McCarthy will get the start in right field to kick off the season, and it will be his first time in the big leagues.
Enjoy the baseball, folks. Holy heck it’s here. Enjoy it.