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Royals set rotation, Volquez for the opener, Danny Duffy to the pen

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Edinson Volquez will start on Opening Night.

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Ned Yost announced that Edinson Volquez will start the April 3 opener against Matt Harvey and the New York Mets. Volquez had previously stated that he did not want to start Opening Day, but Yost gives the ball to his veteran. Free agent Ian Kennedy starts the second game against Mets starter Noah Syndergaard on Tuesday, April 5.

Yost announced the rest of his rotation will be Yordano Ventura, Chris Young, and Kris Medlen, with Medlen likely to be skipped the first week due to so many off days. That leaves Danny Duffy out of the rotation and into the bullpen, where he has excelled in limited action, with a career 1.08 ERA in 16 2/3 innings with 23 strikeouts. Duffy could presumably re-join the rotation at some point, but would face competition from other starting candidates such as Dillon Gee, Chien-Ming Wang, top pitching prospect Kyle Zimmer, and Mike Minor, who is expected to be ready in June.

Starting Rotation (2015 numbers) W L ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 fWAR
RHP Edinson Volquez 13 9 3.55 3.82 200.1 7.0 3.2 2.6
RHP Ian Kennedy 9 15 4.28 4.51 168.1 9.3 2.8 0.8
RHP Yordano Ventura 13 8 4.08 3.57 163.1 8.6 3.2 2.7
RHP Chris Young 11 6 3.06 4.52 123.1 6.1 3.1 0.9
RHP Kris Medlen 6 2 4.01 4.13 69.2 8.3 3.4 0.6