The Angels will counter with right-hander Ricky Nolasco, who will make his fourth career Opening Day start. He started on Opening Day for the Minnesota Twins in 2014 and for the Miami Marlins in 2009 and 2013.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia chose Nolasco over two more high-profile candidates, Garrett Richards and Mike Shoemaker. But Richards missed most of last season with an elbow injury and underwent stem cell treatments to repair damage to his ulnar collateral ligament. Shoemaker’s season was cut short when he was hit in the head by a line drive on Sept. 4 against the Seattle Mariners and underwent surgery. He went 0-1 with a 5.29 in five Cactus League starts.
Nolasco went 1-1 with a 3.52 ERA in four spring starts. He was 4-6 with a 3.21 ERA in 11 starts last season after being traded by Minnesota to the Angels on Aug. 1.
“I think Ricky will handle the Opening Day hoopla,” Scioscia said. “I think he’ll go out there and give us a chance to win.”
Nolasco is 3-2 with a 3.38 ERA in seven career starts against the A’s. Graveman is 1-1 with a 3.38 ERA in six career starts against the Angels.