The Texas Rangers will start the 2020 MLB season with veteran right-hander Lance Lynn on the mound. The team’s manager Chris Woodward announced on Thursday that Lynn got the starting gig for the Opening Day ahead of 2019 starter Mike Minor.
Lynn, who is entering his second year with the Rangers, finished last season with a 16–11 record. He posted 3.67 ERA and had 246 strikeouts, which were the third-most in a single season by a Rangers player.
According to Woodward, the decision to start Lynn was made earlier this year and that he already informed the rest of the team’s pitching core.
“I can announce it now,” said Woodward. “I’ve talked to all of them before this thing. I was actually going to announce it the next day. Unfortunately, we got shut down. They’re very aware of it.”
The decision might come as a surprise to some, especially since Minor had a productive season as a starter last year. The 32-year-old lefty had a 14-10 record with a 3.59 ERA and 200 strikeouts while earning his first All-Star appearance.
However, Woodward wanted to mix things up a bit in 2020.
“I went back and forth with Lance and Mike,“ he added. “I know I gave it to Mike last year and I talked to Mike about this. He did nothing to not deserve this start this year.”
Besides Lynn and Minor, Texas Rangers also have a two-time AL Cy Young winner Corey Kluber on their roster. However, Kluber only joined the team back in February and didn’t receive strong consideration due to this fact.