LEADING OFF: 3 games on opening day, capped by Cubs-Cards

A look at what's happening all around the majors Sunday:



Chris Archer is set to throw the first pitch of the 2017 season when Tampa Bay hosts the Yankees at Tropicana Field. An All-Star in 2015, Archer wound up with 19 losses last year, tied with James Shields for most in the majors. Masahiro Tanaka pitches for New York " he's 6-0 with a 2.82 ERA in eight career starts vs. the Rays.


San Francisco lefty Madison Bumgarner faces Arizona ace Zack Greinke in Phoenix. It's familiar territory for the Giants " their spring training complex is only a few miles away. Greinke is hoping for a better start than last year's opener, when Colorado tagged him for seven runs in four innings.


The Chicago Cubs begin a season as World Series champions for the first time since 1909. Jon Lester starts for the Cubs when they take on Carlos Martinez and the St.

Louis Cardinals in a night game at Busch Stadium. The Cubs will see a familiar face in the opposing dugout " Dexter Fowler, the center field and leadoff man who helped them win the World Series last year, signed with St. Louis in the offseason.


The Cardinals and All-Star catcher Yadier Molina are trying to work out a new contract, and there's a chance it could be done before the opener. Molina wants to have a new deal in place before the first pitch, or he plans to look into free agency after the season. A three-year contract could be worth $55 million or more to the 34-year-old Gold Glover.

This story has been automatically published from the Associated Press wire which uses US spellings

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