DENVER -- The Rockies' 2013 schedule features an early Interleague homestand with the Yankees and a late two-game hosting of the Red Sox, according to Major League Baseball's tentative schedule.
The move of the Astros to the American League has meant more Interleague Play, and the Rockies will play host to the Yankees and Red Sox -- teams with large legions of fans in the Denver area.
The Rockies' first Interleague homestand will feature series with the Rays from May 3-5 and the Yankees from May 7-9, as the Rockies' Interleague schedule is built around games against the American League East and the Astros.
The two-game series with the Red Sox falls at an intriguing time -- Sept. 24-25, when both teams hope and expect to be in playoff races. That series will conclude the Rockies' final homestand of the season. The Rockies and Red Sox also will meet at Fenway Park from June 25-26.
Sandwiched around the set with the Red Sox will be a pair of three-game series against National League West foes. The Rockies face the D-backs at Coors Field from Sept. 20-22 and finish the season on the road against the Dodgers from Sept. 27-28.
The Rockies will open the 2013 season at Milwaukee's Miller Park from April 1-3. It'll be the second time in four seasons the Rockies have opened there. The Rockies won the opener but dropped the next two to the Brewers to begin the 2010 season.
The home opener is set for April 5 against the Padres. It will start a three-game series at Coors Field, which opened in 1995 and is the third-oldest venue in the NL, behind Chicago's Wrigley Field and Los Angeles' Dodger Stadium.
A key part of the schedule could come early, with a 10-game, 10-day homestand April 15-24 against the Mets, D-backs and Braves. This season, the team's starting rotation was affected by injuries and inconsistencies, and a long homestand with Coors Field playing at a hitter-friendly rate not seen in years helped set in motion a difficult first half of the season.
The schedule features a unique home-and-home with the Astros, with the teams meeting at Minute Maid Park from May 27-28 and at Coors Field the following two dates.
Other Interleague road trips have the Rockies meeting the Blue Jays from June 17-19 and the Orioles from Aug. 16-18.
Another important part of the schedule is a 10-game NL West road trip heading into the All-Star break, which will see the Rockies play the D-backs and Padres for three games apiece and the Dodgers for four games.
The other long road trip that could turn out important is a nine-gamer within the division Sept. 6-15, against the Padres, Giants and D-backs.
Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb.