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Ian Kennedy tabbed to start Opening Day for D-backs

The Arizona Diamondbacks have only played three of the 35 Cactus League games on the schedule, but already we know who their starting pitcher will be April 1 against the St. Louis Cardinals.

“If everything goes right, Ian (Kennedy) is going to start Opening Day,” Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said Monday. “He’s been great for us, I don’t know why we’d change that.”

Using Gibson’s words, “if everything goes right,” this will be Kennedy’s third straight Opening Day start. Over the last two seasons, the 28-year-old right-hander has gone 36-16 with a 3.43 ERA in 66 starts for the Diamondbacks.

“It’s not etched in stone, but that is the way it’s set up today,” Gibson said before revealing the majority of his pitching rotation to start the season. “It’s Kennedy, (Trevor) Cahill, (Wade) Miley, (Brandon) McCarthy and then five, but we can switch the other guys around pretty easily.”

There is an open competition for the fifth starter spot between young left-handers Tyler Skaggs and Patrick Corbin and right-hander Randall Delgado, who was acquired from the Atlanta Braves last month.