Sonny Gray honored to start Opening Day in Cardinals debut

Sonny Gray will be the first St. Louis Cardinals pitcher since Kyle Lohse in 2008 to make his debut for the team with a start on Opening Day.

Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol announced Tuesday that Gray would get the nod March 28 on the road against Shohei Ohtani and the Dodgers.

"I don't take that lightly at all," said Gray, the veteran right-hander who signed a $75 million, three-year deal in November. "I appreciate the opportunity and what that shows."

Gray finished second in the AL Cy Young Award voting last season, when he was 8-8 with a 2.79 ERA in 32 starts for Minnesota. The Cardinals also added former All-Stars Kyle Gibson and Lance Lynn to their rotation in free agency.

St. Louis is coming off its first losing season since 2007.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.