MLB: Thoughts From Opening Day Part Deux

Adam BernacchioAnalyst IIIApril 2, 2011

FORT MYERS, FL - MARCH 14:  Outfielder Carl Crawford #13 of the Boston Red Sox fouls off a pitch against the New York Yankees during a Grapefruit League Spring Training Game at City of Palms Park on March 14, 2011 in Fort Myers, Florida.  (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)
J. Meric/Getty Images

Opening Day in baseball is like the Jesse Spano drug episode on Saved by the Bell. Yeah everyone remembers it, but when you look back on it, it’s over exaggerated and just one of many episodes.

Fans of the Milwaukee Brewers, New York Mets, and Minnesota Twins need to relax. It’s just one game.

Since baseball really has two Opening Days, here are some thoughts from baseball’s second Opening Day…

Despite winning 5-4 against the Houston Astros, Philadelphia Phillies’ manager Charlie Manuel was really asleep at the wheel yesterday. With the score tied at zero in the top of the sixth, the Astros had a runner on third with one out.


Walker had a huge game on Friday

With the way Brett Myers was pitching and the Phillies’ offense struggling, how does he not play the infield in in that spot? Of course Bill Hall hits a grounder to second and with the infield back, the Astros took a 1-0 lead.

Then in the top of the second, with one out and runners on second and third, why did Manuel elect to pitch to Michael Bourn? I would have walked Bourn to get to Angel Sanchez and setup the double play opportunity. Manuel decided to pitch to Bourn and Bourn ripped a triple into right center.

Not to be outdone at falling asleep at the wheel in this game was Brad Mills. How can he not pull Brandon Lyon in the ninth inning? I don’t care if he is your “closer.” He had nothing and the Phillies were all over him.

I think I have a proclivity to people with the last name Walker. I was a fan of Larry Walker, Todd Walker, and of course, Johnny Walker. But now I find myself rooting for Neil Walker of the Pittsburgh Pirates. His grandslam off of Ryan Dempster was a moonshot.

Pedro Alvarez made an error in the first and the “Can he play third on a regular basis” question begins.

Even if I had Cubs tattooed on my forehead, I wouldn’t have sat through that game yesterday. Cold and rainy is not ideal baseball weather.

I’ll assume the guns were juiced because Joel Hanrahan was regularly hitting 100 mph.

If this was 1988 and Twitter was around, Carl Crawford would have gotten toasted by someone in the Boston media on a regular basis for yesterday’s performance.

The difference between Jason Varitek and Jarrod Saltalamacchia calling a game? Varitek would have never let happen what happened to Daniel Bard yesterday. Pitch selection was suspect at best.

I still haven’t figured out why Julio Borbon plays over David Murphy?

Let’s get one thing clear: Mike Pelfrey is NOT AN ACE. He was the Mets’ Opening Day starter by default, not because he is their ace or No. 1 starter. He is a No.3 starter on most teams. The fact that he was regularly called an ace yesterday on the SNY broadcast was maddening.

What I find funny is that most Met fans were rooting for Josh Johnson to throw a no-hitter last night because they hate this organization so much. Johnson had his no-hitter broken up in the seventh by Willie Harris.

Twin fans need to relax about Tsuyoshi Nishioka‘s performance yesterday. Yes he was bad (1-for-4 with a K and an error), but Kaz Matsui went 3-for-3 with two doubles, a HR, and two walks in his debut and look how that turned out.

Good to see Jose Bautista and the rest of the Blue Jay bats pick up right where they left off last season — hitting bombs.

Josh Willingham hit a HR in his first Oakland A’s AB. Then him and the rest of the A’s did nothing against Felix Hernandez. Great pitching will always beat mediocre hitting.

Just for one day I would like Adam Dunn‘s power.

Don’t worry Fausto Carmona, things will get better for you when you are pitching for the Yankees in July.

The defense around baseball these first two days has been beyond brutal.

I love listening to Vin Scully, but the fact that he couldn’t pronounce Bruce Bochy’s name correctly all night drove me nuts.

If Evan Longoria and Manny Ramirez have 0-ffers likes they did last night, how are the Tampa Bay Rays going to score?

Only thing better than Jeremy Guthrie‘s performance last night (8 innings, 0 runs, 6 K’s) was his post-game interview. I found it funny that he was promoting the NKOTB/Backstreet Boys tour and even knew when it was coming to Baltimore. May 26th for all you fans out there.

Have a great weekend everyone!!!

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