Tigers rotation announced: Doug Fister on track for home opener

Gregory Shamus

Justin Verlander will throw on Opening Day in Minnesota, and Doug Fister is on schedule to pitch the home opener in Detroit a few days later.

Justin Verlander is your Opening Day starter. Doug Fister gets the honor of throwing in the home opener Friday. The Tigers announced their rotation for the start of the year, and there's really only one surprise: Max Scherzer is bumped pretty low. More on that later.

First, here's how things look:

  1. Justin Verlander
  2. Anibal Sanchez
  3. Rick Porcello
  4. Doug Fister
  5. Max Scherzer

So, reaction. JV getting the season opener comes as no surprise. It was nice to see Fister rewarded with the home opener.

I was happy with the trade in 2011 with the Seattle Mariners the moment it was completed, but even then I cannot tell you I expected Fister to become the key cog in the Tigers rotation that he's become. There have been many great trades, and you of course have to think back to the one that brought Miguel Cabrera to Detroit. The painful-yet-necessary Granderson-for-Scherzer-Jackson-Coke-et-al. trade paid off well, too. But even then, the Fister acquisition remains one of my favorites. It's paying out incredibly.

Scherzer may be near the bottom of the rotation to get extra rest, the Detroit News' Lynn Henning says. Or it's nothing at all, as Jim Leyland says. Scherzer you may recall did not make his spring debut until March 3, by plan, he says. Speculation arose that he was trying to rest the deltoid he injured last fall.

In any case, it does not sound at this point like the Tigers will try to take advantage of off days to skip anyone's start, though that could always change later.

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