The scores. The Highlights:
Giants 12, Brewers 3: Madison Bumgarner was not at his best due to the flu but he could’ve have had diphtheria, dropsy and a generalized flux of humours and he would’ve been OK given the Giants’ bats. Denard Span, Joe Panik and Buster Posey went back to back to back against the Brewers. Which, on the bright side, probably gave Brewers announcer Bob Uecker a chance to revisit some of his better lines from “Major League.”
Orioles 3, Twins 2: At least one east coast game didn’t get bagged, though the combatants did have to endure two rain delays. It was worth it for the hometown folks, though, as the ones who stuck it out got to see the O’s come from behind in the ninth. They also watched them blow a two-run lead, of course, but there can be no true appreciation of the light of the sun if there is not first darkness in our lives.
Rangers 3, Mariners 2: How do you lose a game when you allow only one hit? Bad defense and walking a bunch of dudes is a great way to do it. Felix Hernandez and his defense decided to take the fifth inning off and were replaced by kids wearing Felix Hernandez and his defense suits (stacked on each others’ shoulders, wearing long jackets which looked like Mariners’ players). Hernandez and his doppleganger walked five in all. Cole Hamels was his handsome self all game and struck out eight over seven strong innings.
Nationals 4, Braves 3: I’ve decided to be 100% zen about this Braves season and only pay attention to the good things and treat the bad as just events which must happen in a world with suffering. Which is to say that I’m going to smile at things like “Jeff Francoeur coming in and taking a pinch-hit walk to start a late rally” and pay no attention to, say, Braves announcer Joe Simpson actually make a Hall of Fame case for A.J. Pierzynski earlier in the broadcast (he really did this and my teeth about fell out) only to later watch Pierzynski nearly single-handedly bungle the game away (he really did that and I just nodded and tried to smile). Expect little in life and life will give you pleasant surprises. I expect to expect very, very little as a Braves fan this year.
Reds 6, Phillies 2: May I suggest to my friends who root for the Phillies to take the same approach? That’s the only way you’re going to make it through the four-run innings from your bullpen this year. In other news, I loved Joey Votto‘s heel-turn in this game, transforming from a take walks and be patient guy to a dude who strikes out three times before jumping on a pitch with runners on base and hitting a two-run single.
Dodgers 15, Padres 0: Same comments here as for the Giants game except for the fact that Kershaw was not sick in a physical sense (just in a “man, that dude is SICK” sense) and the announcers who had to traffic in gallows humor were Dick Enberg, Don Orsillo, Jesse Agler and Mark Grant. Nine strikeouts and one hit over seven innings for Kershaw, who looked ridiculously good. Remember when he started out last season sort of struggling? Nah, me neither. Adrian Gonzalez drove in three, and that meant we got to hear Vin Scully call him the “butter and eggs man, because he always delivers” at least twice. I heard it twice anyway. I had turned it off by the eighth inning.
Blue Jays 5, Rays 3: This was the headline at the AP recap over on ESPN’s site when I wrote this this morning:
Nobody tell them that it wasn’t Opening Day for these two teams. Let it be our secret
Rockies 10, Diamondbacks 5: The fan signs from the crowd shots in Phoenix were hyper-specific last night. I saw one that said “Welcome to Arizona, Zack Greinke. It’s OK if you give up nine runs on seven hits in four innings to one of the worst road hitting teams in Christendom. We lost all hope when A.J. Pollock got hurt and you’re still very, very handsome.” At least that’s what I think it said. The camera cut away quickly.
Cubs 9, Angels 0: Jake Arrieta picked up where he left off, allowing only two hits and nothing else doing in seven innings. Three driven in by Miguel Montero, who homered. Three more in a late, somewhat superfluous RBI double from Matt Szczur.
White Sox 4, Athletics 3: Sale struck out eight in an solid outing and the White Sox did all of their damage in a four-run third inning. The Athletics did all of their damage in a three-run third, but it wasn’t quite enough damage. This game was delayed at the outset for 47 minutes thanks to touching video tribute to the White Sox’ fallen team leader, Drake LaRoche. Which is CRAZY given that this game was played in Oakland. When the White Sox have their home opener, get out the hankies, my friends.
Astros vs. Yankees; Red Sox vs. Indians — POSTPONED: Shine on me baby, ’cause it’s raining in my heart, Sun’s rising on a chopping glare. Rain dropping acid bought up in the air. A distorted reality’s now a necessity to be free. (why yes, our first rain outs start things off on an optimistic note!)