James Shields SP SD 1 Day

Shields has officially been named the Padres' Opening Day starter, MLB.com's AJ Cassavell reports.

This was one of the worst kept secrets of the spring, as Shields is no stranger to taking the ball on Opening Day and based only on his durability he profiles the most like a No. 1 starter of any pitcher in the Padres' rotation.

James Shields SP SD 7 Days

Shields threw five hitless innings against the Cubs on Sunday, striking out six and walking two on just 35 pitches.

Shields bounced back nicely after allowing three runs in three innings in his last outing. Over his last three appearances, Shields has 16 strikeouts in 11 innings of work. Per a Union Tribune report, it's looking more and more likely that Shields will be the Padres' opening day starter.

James Shields SP SD 12 Days

Shields allowed three earned runs over three innings with five strikeouts and two walks Tuesday against Milwaukee.

Shields had allowed just one hit and no runs over his first two spring outings, but was touched up against the Brewers on Tuesday. He allowed a two-run shot to Carlos Gomez on a 2-2 count in the second inning, as well as a double to Jean Segura in that frame. Still, Shields' strikeout numbers were solid once again as he K'd five batters for the second straight outing.

James Shields SP SD 17 Days

Shields threw three scoreless innings Thursday against the Dodgers. He finished with no hits, five punch-outs, and 27 strikes on 39 pitches.

Shields was dialed in, throwing first-pitch strikes to all nine batters he faced. His time on the mound went according to plan as the Padres aimed to have him throw three innings and between 45 and 50 pitches. This was Shields' first multi-inning outing of the spring.

James Shields SP SD 27 Days

Shields won't appear in San Diego's first three spring-training games, Dennis Lin of the Union-Tribunereports.

This move is merely cautionary and isn't injury-related. According to Lin, Shields is being brought along a little bit slower than his fellow pitchers because he pitched deep into October. Shields is a 33-year-old who has thrown 227+ innings in each of the last four seasons, so it's not a huge surprise that he's on a less taxing program to start camp.

James Shields SP SD 2 Months

Shields came to terms Monday with the Padres on a four-year contract worth around $75 million, ESPN.com reports.

After a long wait, the top pitcher on the free-agent market will ink a deal with the Padres, capping an active offseason for the squad. Shields immediately slots in as the Padres' staff ace, and should compensate for an expected dropoff in skill by pitching in the favorable confines of Petco Park. Perhaps more importantly, Shields, who has covered an MLB-high 932.2 innings over the last four seasons, adds durability to a Padres pitching corps that has been ravaged by the injury bug in recent years.

James Shields SP SD 5 Months

The Royals officially extended Shields a one-year, $15.3 million qualifying offer Monday.

This was merely a formality, as the Royals were never going to just let Shields walk without receiving a draft pick in return. Although Shields struggled in the postseason to the tune of a 6.12 ERA, he went 14-8 during the regular season with a 3.21 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and 180 strikeouts over 227 frames, his eighth straight season reaching the 200-inning threshold. The Royals have expressed interest in re-signing the 32-year-old right-hander, but Shields will turn down the qualifying offer and the expectation is that he'll end up signing elsewhere.

James Shields SP SD 5 Months

Shields will start Game 5, if the Royals can win at least one game before then, the Los Angeles Times' Bill Shaikin reports.

Shields was chased early in Game 1, and couldn't come close to matching the Giants' ace, Madison Bumgarner, who was outstanding. There was some buzz on Twitter that manager Ned Yost would be wise to go with Danny Duffy in Game 5, given how lackluster Shields has been in the postseason, and how his velocity has dipped slightly, but the Royals' manager will entrust a potential Game 5 to Shields.

James Shields SP SD 5 Months

Shields will start Game 1 of the World Series against the Giants on Tuesday, Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star reports.

The Royals only needed Shields once during the Championship Series, so he'll be very well rested when he takes the mound Tuesday. While Shields has a 5.63 ERA in 16 postseason innings thus far, he had a 2.31 ERA in September and his lone shutout during the regular season was a four-hitter against San Francisco back on Aug. 9.

James Shields SP SD 6 Months

Shields could start Game 4 of the ALCS on Wednesday, the Kansas City Star's Andy McCullough reports.

Game 3 was pushed from Monday to Tuesday, which means either Shields or Jason Vargas could pitch Wednesday without being on short rest. However, manager Ned Yost said he will debate giving Shields an extra day's rest and saving him for a potential Game 5.