Kershaw to start opening day for 7th straight time

February 18, 2017

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) Clayton Kershaw will make his seventh straight opening-day start for the Los Angeles Dodgers, tying Don Sutton's franchise record.

''You take a little bit of pride in wanting to do it every year,'' Kershaw said. ''I'm thankful to get to do it so long for the same team. Not a lot of people get to do that. It's pretty cool.''

The announcement was no surprise. It took Manager Dave Roberts four days into spring training to say Kershaw will start April 3 at home against the San Diego Padres.

Roberts calls this an ''obvious'' decision. He spoke Saturday before his club began an abbreviated workout schedule on a rainy day in the desert.

Sutton made seven straight starts from 1972 through 1978. Don Drysdale had seven opening-day starts but not in successive years. Fernando Valenzuela made six.

Kershaw is 4-0 with two no-decisions on opening day.

''I hope I get to do it for 10 more years,'' said Kershaw, who turns 29 next month. ''I don't feel old, but getting to do it seven times, I guess, I've been around a little bit.''