Yu Darvish to start April 9 vs. Seattle

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Texas Rangers starter Yu Darvish will make his major league debut Monday, April 9, against Seattle at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.

The game starts at 7:05 p.m. and is the first of a four-game set with Ichiro Suzuki and the Mariners.

Rangers manager Ron Washington was asked his thoughts on Darvish facing Suzuki in the club's first AL West game of the season.

"Just get him out," Washington said. "Ichiro is one of the better players in the American League. Darvish is going to be trying to establish himself as one of the better pitchers, so it should be a good matchup. But it's not Darvish against Ichiro, it's Darvish against the Seattle Mariners."

The Rangers officially announced the rotation Thursday. Here's how it lines up:

Opening Day, April 6 vs. Chicago White Sox (1:05 p.m.): RHP Colby Lewis

Saturday, April 7 vs. White Sox (7:05 p.m.): LHP Derek Holland

Sunday, April 8 vs. White Sox (7:05 p.m.): LHP Matt Harrison

Monday, April 9 vs. Mariners (7:05 p.m.): RHP Yu Darvish

Tuesday, April 10 vs. Mariners (7:05 p.m.): RHP Neftali Feliz

NOTE: ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM is the flagship station for the Texas Rangers with Eric Nadel and Steve Busby calling all the action. The first two games against the White Sox and the Seattle series will be seen on Fox Sports Southwest. Sunday's game vs. Chicago is on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball.

That sets up Darvish for the Monday night start in Texas, followed by his first road start in Minnesota five days later. He is also slated to face the New York Yankees in Texas that first month.

Darvish, 25, makes his final start in the Arizona desert Friday night in Scottsdale, Ariz., against the Colorado Rockies. He’s likely to go six innings and push his pitch count toward 100 pitches. Darvish will then dial it back to a few innings against the Rangers' Double-A club in Frisco in his final tune-up before making his first regular season start.

Darvish has thrown 15 innings in Arizona – in Cactus League, minor league and intrasquad games – and has given up seven runs on 12 hits with 10 walks and 21 strikeouts. Darvish has impressed scouts with the movement on his breaking pitches and his repeatable delivery.

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