The Tampa Bay Rays are credited with starting the opener movement. And now, the team is branding it.
The Rays have created T-shirts for their pitchers - in particular, the relievers who will be starting games - to help embrace a strategy that's led some to question its place in baseball.
Ryne Stanek, one of the Rays' primary openers last season, could be seen modeling the new swag at spring training.
Stanek, who pitched to a 2.98 ERA over 29 starts in just 66 1/3 innings during 2018, took the idea one step further with a promotional video.
The Rays are planning to take the opener strategy to new levels in 2019, as they'll begin the season with a three-man rotation followed by back-to-back openers. The team found great success deploying the tactic in 2018 en route to a surprising 90-win campaign.