CINCINNATI -- Reds fans have rarely, if ever, needed added reasons to come to the ballpark for Opening Day, because the tradition of being the oldest franchise in professional baseball in itself has helped spur demand for tickets.
But on Monday, March 31, 2014, the Reds' opener will be against a usual nemesis and National League Central rival -- the Cardinals. Because of their status as baseball's first team, Cincinnati is usually given the honor of opening every season at home.
Tentative schedules were released on Tuesday for all 30 clubs.
Immediately following the first home series vs. St. Louis comes the first road trip -- April 4-9 against the Mets, and again vs. the Cardinals.
Interleague Play vs. the American League East will bring the Reds to New York a second time to face the Yankees from July 18-20, right after the All-Star break.
Other AL East opponents next season are spread throughout the schedule and include the Rays at Great American Ball Park from April 11-13; the Red Sox at Fenway Park on May 6-7 and again at home on Aug. 12-13; the Blue Jays at home from June 20-22 and the Orioles from Sept. 2-4 at Camden Yards.
For the second-straight year, there is a four-game home and home rivalry series against the Indians -- Aug. 4-5 at Cleveland and Aug. 6-7 at Cincinnati.
There will some tests on the road, with three trips of 10 days, including from April 18-27 vs. the Cubs, Pirates and Braves; 10 games June 23-July 2 at the Cubs, Giants and Padres and their final 10-day, nine-game road trip vs. the Brewers, Cubs and Cardinals Sept. 12-21.
Like in 2013, the Reds are slated to wrap up the regular season at home vs. the Pirates from Sept. 26-28.
All game times have yet to be determined.
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon.