Less than a week after announcing that Chris Sale will not start for the Red Sox on Opening Day, Manager Alex Cora confirmed Wednesday that two-time Cy Young winner Corey Kluber will take the ball for the club when it opens the season on March 30.

Cora confirmed the decision to reporters in Fort Myers, Florida. Kluber will face the Orioles on Opening Day with Sale likely lined up for the second game of the season on April 1.

Kluber, a four-time All-Star who won Cy Young awards in 2014 and 2017, signed a one-year deal with the Red Sox in January after going 10-10 with a 4.34 ERA in 164 innings for the Rays in 2022. He has previously made five Opening Day starts. Kluber made his fourth start of the spring Wednesday against the Rays. He pitched 5 innings, allowing one run and one walk. He struck out six and has a 2.13 ERA this spring. Boston won 9-1.

Kluber will likely make two additional spring starts.

Cora said Wednesday he informed Kluber in January that he would start on Opening Day. Sale, who has been with the team since 2017, was the logical choice heading into camp but Cora decided to avoid giving the nod to the oft-injured lefty.

With James Paxton (hamstring strain), Brayan Bello (slow buildup after forearm soreness) and Garrett Whitlock (slow buildup after September hip surgery) all candidates for short injured list stints to start the season, the Red Sox are expected to roll out a rotation of Kluber, Sale, Tanner Houck, Kutter Crawford and Nick Pivetta at the beginning of the year.



CUBA 4, AUSTRALIA 3: Cuba earned a 7,500-mile flight to Miami for a trip to the World Baseball Classic semifinals for the first time since 2006.

“Cuban baseball fans are so emotional right now. They have been waiting for a long time at the moment,” Manager Armando Johnson said the win at Tokyo. “This is the new page, new chapter.”

Alfredo Despaigne hit a tie-breaking sacrifice fly and Yoelkis Guibert followed with a two-run single in three-run fifth inning.

Using current major leaguers for the first time at the WBC, Cuba plays on Sunday in Marlins Park

Cuba, which lost the 2006 final to Japan, had been eliminated in the second round of the previous three WBCs. The Cubans won their third straight game in this tournament after losing their first two.


VENEZUELA 5, ISRAEL 1: Eugenio Suárez homered, singled twice and had three RBI and starter Jesús Luzardo struck out five in four scoreless innings at Miami to lead Venezuela, which already had clinched the Group D title and a quarterfinal berth.

Ronald Acuña Jr. had two singles while Eduardo Escobar also went deep for Venezuela, which finished with 10 hits.

Israel finished 1-3 after reaching the second round in the 2017 tournament.

MEXICO 10, CANADA 3: Randy Arozarena had two doubles and five RBI, Rowdy Tellez added a two-run single and solo homer, and Mexico pulled away late from Canada to earn a spot in the quarterfinals.

Mexico started the tournament with a surprising loss to Colombia in Group C at Chase Field but rallied with three straight wins, beating the U.S., Britain and Canada.

Canada played without Los Angeles Dodgers star first baseman Freddie Freeman, who left Tuesday’s game because of a hamstring injury.

PUERTO RICO 5, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 2:  All-Star closer Edwin Díaz of the New York Mets was taken off the field in a wheelchair after appearing to seriously injure his right leg celebrating Puerto Rico’s victory at Miami.

Díaz was swarmed by teammates after pitching a perfect ninth inning in a win that clinched Puerto Rico a spot in the WBC quarterfinals. The group was jumping together in the infield when Díaz collapsed to the ground, and he immediately reached for his right leg.

Díaz was in tears and did not put any weight on his right leg as a coach and trainer helped him limp toward the dugout.

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