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Red Sox to open 2014 slate in Baltimore

First game at Fenway Park scheduled for April 4 against Brewers

BOSTON -- Though the focus is still on the remainder of what has become a riveting season for the Red Sox, fans can start making plans for next year.

The tentative schedule for 2014 was announced Tuesday, and Boston will open on the road, playing at Camden Yards against the Orioles on March 31.

It will be the earliest Opening Day for the Sox since 2008, when they began the season in Japan against the Oakland Athletics.

This will be the fourth straight year that Boston has opened on the road. However, the road trip won't be a long one.

After the three-game series in Baltimore, the Sox will come home and open the doors to Fenway Park on April 4 with an Interleague contest against the Milwaukee Brewers.

The Rangers will also come to town during the opening six-game homestand.

The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry won't take long to be renewed in '14. The clubs will square off at Yankee Stadium for a four-game series April 10-13.

When the Yankees come to Fenway for a series from April 22-24, it will be school vacation week in Boston.

Which other Interleague foes will visit Boston in '14? The Cincinnati Reds (May 6-7), the Braves (May 28-29) and Theo Epstein's Cubs (June 30-July 2).

This will mark just the second time the Cubs have played regular-season games in Boston. In fact, Chicagoans might be tempted to spend a summer vacation week in Boston. The White Sox are at Fenway from July 7-10.

The Red Sox will play their first series in a National League park when they visit Atlanta's Turner Field, May 26-27 for two games that immediately precede the Braves' two-game set at Fenway.

Perhaps the most challenging stretch of the schedule will be in June, when the Red Sox play 19 games in six road cities (Cleveland, Detroit, Baltimore, Oakland, Seattle, New York).

For the first time since 2005, the Red Sox will play in St. Louis. That series will be a three-game set from Aug. 5-7 and will mark the first time the Sox have played in the Cardinals' new Busch Stadium.

The trip to St. Louis will be part of a three-city excursion that also includes three games in Anaheim against the Angels and a two-game Interleague set in Cincinnati against the Reds.

The last trip to a National League city for the Red Sox will be at PNC Park against the Pirates from Sept. 16-18.

The visit to Pittsburgh will be in the middle of the final road trip of the season, which starts in Kansas City (Sept. 11-14) and finishes in Baltimore (Sept. 19-21).

The last homestand could be crucial when you consider the opponents: The Red Sox will face the Rays Sept. 23-25 and the Yankees Sept. 26-28.

Ian Browne is a reporter for Read his blog, Brownie Points, and follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne.

Boston Red Sox