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Game Thread: Francisco Lindor and the Tribe battle the Royals to open the 2020 season

Baseball is back. For real.

Cleveland Indians Summer Workouts Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

One hundred and twenty days after the Cleveland Indians were supposed to open the 2020 season against the Detroit Tigers, the Tribe is finally taking the field for an actual game.

And so much has changed in the last four months.

Instead of a full 162-game regular season, the spread of COVID-19 and contentious labor negotiations between MLB, the owners, and the MLB Players’ Association have led to an abbreviated 60-game season with retooled schedules and empty stands.

This much is certain: It’ll be a season unlike any other.

Tonight, Shane Bieber takes the mound at Progressive Field for the first Opening Day start of his career. Here is the Indians lineup that will be backing him up:

  1. César Hernández, 2B
  2. José Ramírez, 3B
  3. Francisco Lindor, SS
  4. Carlos Santana, 1B
  5. Franmil Reyes, DH
  6. Jordan Luplow, LF
  7. Domingo Santana, RF
  8. Roberto Pérez, C
  9. Oscar Mercado, CF

Rather than the Tigers, Cleveland will start the season against the Kansas City Royals, who will be sending southpaw Danny Duffy to the mound. And here is their starting nine:

  1. Whit Merrifield, RF
  2. Adalberto Mondesí, SS
  3. Jorge Soler, DH
  4. Salvador Pérez, C
  5. Alex Gordon, LF
  6. Ryan McBroom, 1B
  7. Maikel Franco, 3B
  8. Nicky Lopez, 2B
  9. Bubba Starling, CF

In the words of Robert Manfred: PLAY BALL!