Sep 13, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Bruce Chen (52) pitches in the first inning against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas City Royals to Play Texas Rangers in Cactus League Opener

The Kansas City Royals will play in the Cactus League opener against the Texas Rangers at 2:05 p.m. CST.

The Royals will sport their shiny new lineup with two new faces in the top two spots, Norichika Aoki and Omar Infante.

1. Norichika Aoki (L) – RF

2. Omar Infante (R) – 2B

3. Eric Hosmer (L) – 1B

4. Billy Butler (R) – DH

5. Alex Gordon (L) – LF

6. Salvador Perez (R) – C

7. Mike Moustakas (L) – 3B

8. Lorenzo Cain (R) – CF

9. Alcides Escobar (R) – SS

It’s easy to immediately recognize that the lineup is better than last year’s low-scoring, badly-sequenced lineup. Even though the game won’t count for anything, it will be fun to see the new additions working alongside familiar players.

The Royals will face 2013 Cy Young candidate Yu Darvish, who is coming off a 277 strikeout season. Darvish is always fun to watch, even if he’s making your favorite team look silly in the process.

The Royals will start Bruce Chen and follow him up with Danny Duffy, which might provide entertaining reactions from Rangers hitters who will suddenly see a ten mile an hour increase in velocity.

Everyone knows how well Chen can pitch, so fans should pay attention to Duffy’s ability to hit the corners of the plate, something with which he’s not had much success.

According to Kansas City Star beat reporter Andy McCullough, here are all Royals pitchers slated to pitch today:



Ron Washington usually likes to open the Cactus League with his regular season opening day lineup, but today, he is without three of his starters. Alex Rios is out with a sore toe. Juickson Profar has shoulder tendinitis. Catcher Geovany Soto is expected to be out until mid-March while recovering from ankle surgery.

Die hard fans won’t gain much insight into this season from the first Spring Training game, but baseball is finally here. Officially.

Tags: Danny Duffy Kansas City Royals Norichika Aoki

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