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Zack Greinke named Royals Opening Day starter

Daniel Lynch will also begin the season on the IL.

Cleveland Guardians v Kansas City Royals Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Royals manager Matt Quatraro tabbed Zack Greinke to be his Opening Day starter for the season opener on March 30 against the Minnesota Twins. It will be the second year in a row that Greinke has started the opener, and third time overall that Greinke has started on Royals Opening Day. Pablo López will get the starting assignment for the Twins. Brady Singer might have been a candidate to start the opener, but his time serving on Team USA in the World Baseball Classic may have cost him a chance to build up his innings this spring.

The rest of the starting rotation is still unknown, but will likely include Brady Singer and Jordan Lyles. Brad Keller should have an inside track at a rotation spot. Daniel Lynch was a rotation candidate, but suffered a left shoulder strain in his start last night and will begin the season on the Injured List. That likely creates an opening for Kris Bubic or possibly Ryan Yarbrough in the rotation.

The 39-year old Greinke will be the oldest Opening Day starter in club history. He gave up just one run in 5 23 innings in a 3-1 win over Cleveland last year. Greinke becomes the to start at least three season openers for the Royals, joining Kevin Appier (seven), Dennis Leonard (four), and Paul Splittorff, Bud Black, Bret Saberhagen, Jeff Suppan, Gil Meche, and Danny Duffy (three).

Royals Opening Day starters:

Wally Bunker 1969-1970

Dick Drago 1971-1972

Steve Busby 1973, 1975

Paul Splittorff 1974, 1976-1977

Dennis Leonard 1978-1980, 1982

Larry Gura 1981, 1983

Bud Black 1984-1986

Danny Jackson 1987

Bret Saberhagen 1988, 1990-1991

Mark Gubicza 1989

Kevin Appier 1992-1997, 1999

Tim Belcher 1998

Jeff Suppan 2000-2002

Runelvys Hernandez 2003

Brian Anderson 2004

Jose Lima 2005

Scott Elarton 2006

Gil Meche 2007-2009

Zack Greinke 2010, 2022-2023

Luke Hochevar 2011

Bruce Chen 2012

James Shields 2013-2014

Yordano Ventura 2015

Edinson Volquez 2016

Danny Duffy 2017-2018, 2020

Brad Keller 2019, 2021