Rays will face Yankees on ESPN in 2017 season opener

Rays will also host MLB's first scheduled doubleheader since 2011

For the second consecutive year, the Tampa Bay Rays will open the 2017 season as part of ESPN's national Opening Day coverage when they host the New York Yankees on Sunday, April 2 at Tropicana Field. Game time will be announced at a later date. All 30 major league teams released their 2017 schedules today. The schedule is subject to change

The Rays will also host the Oakland Athletics in a single-admission doubleheader on Saturday, June 10 -- Major League Baseball's first scheduled doubleheader since July 16, 2011, when the A's hosted the Los Angeles Angels, and only the second since the A's played at Minnesota on June 7, 1996.

"Many of us in the Rays organization have fond memories of single-gate doubleheaders, so this is something that we have long wanted to do," said Rays President Brian Auld. "The schedule lines up for it nicely next season and we're going to work hard to make it a special day at Tropicana Field."

It will also be the second doubleheader at Tropicana Field. On September 30, 2004, the Rays and Detroit Tigers played a single-admission doubleheader after Hurricane Frances forced postponement of two games four weeks earlier.

This will be the fourth time the Rays have hosted the Yankees in their home opener. Tampa Bay won the three previous games in 2004, 2009 and 2012. This will be the eighth consecutive season the Rays will open the season at home. The Rays have sold out their last 11 home openers. The Yankees return for a weekend series, May 19-21, and another three-game set, September 11-13.

Also highlighting the home schedule are a pair of weekend series with the Boston Red Sox (July 7-9 and September 15-17) and home-and-home two-game series with the Chicago Cubs. The Rays will host the Cubs, September 19-20, and visit Wrigley Field, July 4-5. The Cubs will be making only their second appearance at Tropicana Field, first since the Rays swept them in a three-game series in 2008.

For the fifth consecutive season, Tampa Bay will play 20 interleague games. The Rays will face all five teams from the National League Central Division and continue their annual home-and-home series with the Miami Marlins. Other interleague home opponents include the Cincinnati Reds (June 19-21) and Milwaukee Brewers (August 4-6). The Rays will visit Busch Stadium (St. Louis) and PNC Park (Pittsburgh).

The schedule includes 76 games versus their rivals from the American League East Division and 33 against the teams from both the AL Central and AL West Divisions. The breakdown includes 19 games each against the Yankees (9 home, 10 away), Orioles (9 home, 10 away), Red Sox (9 home, 10 away) and Toronto Blue Jays (10 home, 9 away).

The Rays will play seven games against the Kansas City Royals, Detroit Tigers, Cleveland Indians, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Oakland Athletics and Houston Astros. The Rays will have six games apiece versus the Chicago White Sox, Minnesota Twins, Texas Rangers and Seattle Mariners.

The Rays close out the 2017 home schedule with a three-game homestand against the Orioles, September 29 -- October 1.

Double Play Season Tickets may be purchased by calling 888-FAN-RAYS or online at raysbaseball.com/doubleplay.