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Dodgers Opening Day Now March 31, On ESPN

The Los Angeles Dodgers will begin their 2011 season one day earlier than originally planned, moving their opening day with the San Francisco Giants to March 31. The game will be televised at 5 p.m. on ESPN, but more importantly, the game will be held at Dodger Stadium. ESPN originally had requested the game on March 31 be held in San Francisco, the home of the defending World Series champions.

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The Dodgers originally had scheduled a four-game series with the Giants at Dodger Stadium, beginning April 1, a series to run Friday through Monday. The ESPN plan would have had one game March 31 in San Francisco, followed by the four-game series in Los Angeles. The Dodgers resisted that plan, and now will have their four-game series at home, with an off day on Monday, April 4.

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Three of the four games in that opening weekend will be nationally televised, with Thursday and Sunday on ESPN and Saturday on Fox. However, that isn't always good news, as that means one more game not broadcast by the great Vin Scully. Still, it's not hard to get excited about Clayton Kershaw facing Tim Lincecum on ESPN to open the 2011 season.

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For more Dodgers news and information, be sure to read the SB Nation blog True Blue LA.