Tigers unveil Grapefruit League schedule

DETROIT -- The Tigers will open their 2016 Spring Training schedule with their annual exhibition against Florida Southern College on Feb. 29, starting off a five-week, 35-game slate that includes matchups against the defending National League champion Mets, American League East champion Yankees, NL Central champion Cardinals, and up-and-coming Astros.

Grapefruit League play opens for Detroit's 80th year in Lakeland, Fla., with a home-and-home set against the Pirates -- March 1 in Lakeland, then March 2 in Bradenton as part of a split-squad set. The Tigers will also face the Yankees in Tampa that day before New York visits Lakeland on March 4.

The Tigers face the Yankees two more times in the final week of camp, trekking to Tampa on March 28 before one more game in Lakeland on March 31.

As for the Mets, Detroit visits Port St. Lucie for a game against a split-squad club on March 7 before the rematch on March 14 at Joker Marchant Stadium.

The Tigers and Cardinals have a home-and-home set March 17-18, beginning in Lakeland. The rematch sets up Detroit's annual two-day trip to Jupiter, culminating in a March 19 game against the Marlins.

The Tigers and Marlins open the season against each other in Miami on April 5, which means manager Brad Ausmus' club won't be leaving Florida when Spring Training ends. Detroit closes out the home portion of its schedule against the Rays on April 1, the final game at Joker Marchant Stadium before renovations begin in earnest. The Braves welcome the Tigers to Disney's Wide World of Sports complex the next day.

All games at Joker Marchant Stadium are 1:05 p.m. ET starts. The only two night games on the Tigers schedule are road tilts in the final week, with a 6:35 game against the Yankees on March 28 ahead of a 6:05 p.m. matchup with the Orioles on March 30.

As in recent years, tickets for home Spring Training games will be priced at three different levels depending on the opponent and date. Individual game tickets go on sale Jan. 16, online at tigers.com, by phone at 866-66-TIGER, or in person at the Joker Marchant Stadium box office. Full-season Spring Training ticket packages are on sale now at tigers.com, the stadium box office, or by calling the Marchant Stadium box office at 863-686-8075. Fans can also call the box office at that number for partial season-ticket plans of five or more games.

Spring Training trips are also available through Detroit Tigers Vacations at tigers.com/vacations.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.