Ron Washington and the Texas Rangers announced their starting rotation for the upcoming season on Wednesday, and there was a slight surprise in the announcement.
It had been assumed by many, including yours truly, that Yu Darvish would start the third game of the season, a nationally televised affair on Sunday night against the Chicago White Sox, but that's not the case.
Instead, he'll start the next night as the No. 4 starter against the Seattle Mariners and Ichiro, which will almost certainly set a modern-day record for the amount of media at one regular season baseball game.
As we've known for some time now, Colby Lewis will be the Opening Day starter, and while he's not the true No. 1 on the staff, he deserves the ceremonial honor for the past two postseasons he's turned in for the Rangers. It was no surprise to see Derek Holland, who the Rangers believe could develop into an ace, slotted as the No. 2 pitcher for Saturday's game. On Sunday, instead of Darvish, the Rangers will trot Matt Harrison out to the mound after he had a quietly successful season in 2011 with Darvish pitching in the fourth slot and Neftali Feliz rounding out the rotation as a No. 5.
There was some question as to whether Feliz would start the season on the disabled list, which would put Scott Feldman into the rotation to start the season after his stellar spring of 20 strikeouts and two walks in 20 innings pitched. But the announcement would seem to suggest everything with Feliz's shoulder is good to go and he'll make his scheduled start on Tuesday against the Mariners.
So there you have it folks: Lewis, Holland, Harrison, Darvish, Feliz.
When you break it down by talent level and make a true rotation, it'd probably look more like: Darvish, Holland, Harrison, Lewis, Feliz.