Luis Castillo has been named the Mariners Opening Day starter against Boston

Shocker! The Mariners turn to their ace, Luis Castillo, to start on Opening Day as the Mariners open the 2024 season against the Boston Red Sox.
Baltimore Orioles v Seattle Mariners
Baltimore Orioles v Seattle Mariners / Alika Jenner/GettyImages

For the second time in his Mariners career, Luis Castillo has been named the starting pitcher on Opening Day against the Boston Red Sox. This will be the 4th time in his career that he has started on Opening Day, 2 with Seattle and 2 with his former team, the Cincinnati Reds. In last year's game, he gave up just one hit in six scoreless innings but did not factor into the decision.

La Piedra is coming off one of the best seasons of his career. He went 14-9, with a 3.34 ERA and a 1.096 WHIP. He pitched in 197.0 innings and struck out 219. He was an All-Star for the third time in his career, and earned Cy Young votes for the first time, finishing 5th. 2023 was Castillo's first full season in Seattle, and he quickly became the best pitcher on the best pitching staff in Major League Baseball.

2023 was a great season for Castillo, but it could have been even better. Had he not fallen off in September, He would have given eventual Cy Young winner Gerrit Cole a run for his money. In his 6 September starts, Castillo struggled to a 4.96 ERA over 32.2 innings, with a 1.56 WHIP. Castillo will need to avoid months like September if he wants to eventually win a Cy Young award.

Luis set some serious goals for himself in 2023. He wanted to be the Opening Day starter, make the All-Star team, and win the Cy Young Award. He accomplished two of those goals, and almost got all 3. Should he set the same goals in 2024, He has a serious chance to achieve them. He can cross off one of those goals already in 2024, and I am pumped to see him try and achieve the last two.

As I write this, the Red Sox have not announced their Opening Day starter. All signs point to Brayan Bello as their starter, but nothing is official yet. Lucas Giolito would have been the starter on Opening Day, but he just had elbow surgery and is out for the season. The Sox could turn to veteran pitcher Nick Pivetta, should they want a veteran to start the first game.

The season gets underway next week, but this weekend is the Mariners Opening Week Warm-up at T-Mobile Park. This will be the first chance to check out the stadium before the season gets underway. If you are going, let us know! We are getting close, and I can't wait. As always, Go Mariners!