It's now official. If you want to see the Red Sox opener in 2008 live and in person, you'll have to go a long way to see it.
The Red Sox will open the 2008 season, and the defense of their World Series championship (I love writing that) on March 25 and 26 at the Tokyo Dome (pictured) in Japan against the Oakland Athletics.
The A's will be the home team for both games, and it should be a huge deal there, with favorite sons Daisuke Matsuzaka and Hideki Okajima playing before their countrymen. (And Okie will be pitching in the stadium he called home for a decade before coming to Boston.) Both clubs will also play two exhibition games against Japanese teams there in the two days before playing each other.
After the series, both teams will get five days off before both go to Oakland to play two more games against each other there and get the regular season going in the U.S. (Although the Red Sox may play a couple of exhibition games on the West Coast before starting the regular season again. That is still to be determined.)
Here's more on the opening series in Japan:
The Red Sox also announced their 2008 schedule. After the Oakland series, they return home on April 8th to raise the championship flag and give out the World Series rings against Detroit. The first series against the Yankees takes place later that weekend. Here is the complete schedule: