Opening day for baseball, plus pep rally information on today's Missourinet Mornings video for the national champion Central Missouri Mules.

Opening day for baseball, plus pep rally information on today’s Missourinet Mornings video for the national champion Central Missouri Mules.

The 2014 season starts for the Royals at 12:05 our time from Detroit. Tigers favored to win the AL Central. Royals poised to make a playoff run. A new leadoff hitter. Nori Aoki in right field. New number two hitter Omar Infante at 2nd base. James Shields will face Justin Verlander, the former Rookie of the Year, Cy Young and MVP will start his seventh consecutive opener for Detroit despite the fact Max Scherzer is coming off a Cy Young season of his own in 2013. Verlander is 16-5 in 29 career starts against the Royals. James Shields makes his second opening-day start for Kansas City. Firmly established as an ace and a workhorse, Shields has topped 30 starts and 200 innings seven years in a row.

Then at 3:05 our time, the Cardinals make another push for the World Series, opening in Cincinnati. Veteran 2nd baseman Mark Ellis will start the season on the DL, with tendonitis. Pete Kozma takes his spot on the roster. Adam Wainwright will get the ball to start against Johnny Cueto of the Reds. Wainwright goes for career win 100 today against the Reds. A team he has had mixed results with. Just 5-9 lifetime and 4-4 in Great American Ballpark. He’ll face Johnny Cueto, who makes his fourth opening day start with news Reds manager Bryan Price, the former pitching coach.

The SEC may not be a strong basketball conference from top to bottom, but at the end of the day, the conference landed two teams in the Final Four. Florida ended Dayton’s fairy tale run with a 62-52 win. Kentucky knocks off Michigan 75-72.

Last but not least, In cooperation with the community of Warrensburg, the University of Central Missouri will hold a welcome home pep rally and parade on Monday, March 31, honoring the 2014 NCAA-II Men’s Basketball National Champion Mules Basketball team.

Members of the campus community and the Greater Warrensburg Area Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center and UCM Athletics have planned a parade that will begin at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, March 31 at the corner of Holden and Ming Streets in Warrensburg, just south of where Holden Street is closed. The parade will travel south on Holden Street, turn right on Houx Street, and then head to the Multipurpose Building after turning right on Washington Street. A pep rally coordinated by UCM Athletics will follow at 6 p.m. in the Multipurpose Building.