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Is today the Opening Day lineup?

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff  March 29, 2011 11:44 AM

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FORT MYERS, Fla. ó Is today's lineup the Opening Day lineup?

It's a good question and Tim Britton of the Providence Journal asked it.

"Nice try," Terry Francona said.

Francona isn't sure yet. The Rangers are starting C.J. Wilson, a hard-throwing lefthander. J.D. Drew is 1 for 6 against him. David Ortiz is 1 for 10 with four strikeouts.

"Itís not just a lefty, itís who the lefty is. Thatís why Iíve been so hesitant to talk about the lineup. Itís because C.J. Wilson is one of those lefties where on normal days if itís July, thatís the day you give your righties a shot," Francona said. "But itís Opening Day. So thereís some thought that needs to go into that. ... He is so tough on lefties it gives me pause to think. How much I've got to see."

Francona plans to think about it on the plane tonight. "I really want some time to look at the whole series," he said.

For even veteran players, starting on Opening Day is a big deal.

"I think for a lot of guys it is,Ē Francona said. ďI think in some instances maybe itís not. Thatís my job to kind of gauge that.Ē

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