Major League Baseball’s regular season is here.
The 2018 campaign will begin on Thursday, March 29. From there, the 30 teams will make the six-month trek with an eye on reaching the postseason. Of course, not every team has realistic playoff aspirations. But that’s the beauty of Opening Day: everyone can pretend otherwise.
Cubs vs Marlins 2018 Opening Day
On paper, this is a lopsided affair. The Cubs are a World Series favorite while the Marlins would be doing well to avoid the majors’ worst record. Anything can happen on any given day during baseball’s regular season, however. Chicago’s seeming superiority extends to the mound.
The Cubs will send out Jon Lester, who has multiple Opening Day assignments and World Series rings to his name. The well-seasoned Lester had an uneven 2017, finishing with fewer than 200 innings for the first time since 2011. Still, he’s a savvy pitcher who, at his best, confounds hitters with an arsenal that’s heavy on fastballs, cutters, and curveballs.
Jose Urena, contrariwise, is all about his power fastball-slider combination. He started last season in the bullpen, moving to the rotation in early May. Urena managed a 3.97 ERA over the ensuing 28 starts, but notched fewer than two strikeouts per walk. He’s miscast as a staff ace, and it’s possible he winds up back in relief if he proves unable to consistently retire left-handed batters.
Here’s how you can catch the Chicago Cubs vs Miami Marlins game that will kick off the new season:
- Date: Thursday, Mar. 29
- Time: 12:40 p.m. ET
- Location: Marlins Park — Miami, Florida
- Starting Pitchers: Jon Lester vs. Jose Urena
- TV Channel: ESPN (check local listings)
- Online Stream: MLB(dot)tv, WatchESPN