There are positive comments in the Gelb column about the opener strategy today on the Athletic.
I am not so sure the opener was that great though. We ended up getting 3.2 IP from Irvin and then used much of our bullpen last night. Alvarez was less good in his second inning as expected and is unavailable today. We used Nicasio for one out early. Velasquez was used too so fewer long options today.
I am not sure that trying to get 5 innings out of Irvin would not have been a better strategy than the opener. We have too few left-handed pitchers on the roster to throw them both in one game (maybe Davis will be recalled today of course).
I am all into analytics, but the opener really does not seem to move the needle that much.