Baseball is back! And yesterday was an incredible start for the Phillies, as they walloped the Rangers by a football-like 14-10 score. It was an incredible start to a season filled with low expectations.
So, why not recap it with a few animated GIFs! There was plenty to get excited about during Monday’s big win.
Yes, the first big highlight of the season was a walk. Ryan Howard has averaged 81 walks over a 162-game season for his career, so it’s not really surprising he drew a base on balls here. But look what it led to!
Yeah, it led to a run. And to the always-excellent scene of Ryan Howard rounding third base. Maybe Howard could’ve been a two-sport athlete: Get him going in open space and who’s going to tackle him? Howard finished 2-for-5 with 3 strikeouts.
Then things got even better! Jimmy Rollins, lambasted in the offseason for not taking spring training seriously enough, hit a grand slam to give the Phillies a 6-0 lead in just the second inning. As a wise man once said: “Fuck yeah, Jimmy.”
Anyway, that lead would be gone by the third, as Cliff Lee gave up 4 runs in the second and 3 in the third. He was not happy about it. Lee went 5 innings and gave up 8 runs; he didn’t give up his eighth run until this fourth game last season.
And it could have been worse, if not for this fantastic Ben Revere catch in the 2nd.
The rest of the game was pretty awesome.
First, they got a run on this hit by Chase Utley, which just got by Rangers second baseman Josh Wilson. Utley finished 3-for-6.
Then, some slick baserunning by third baseman Cody Asche got them a second run on a John Mayberry pinch-hit, 2-RBI double.
And some sloppy fielding by the Rangers got the Phillies another run!
Then free agent signee Marlon Byrd singled home a run. Byrd went 2-for-6.
The Phillies ran into some trouble in the seventh, as Texas plated two and had the bases loaded down three. But Antonio Bastardo got Elvis Andrus to ground out, and Chase Utley just made the play.
The star of the game, though, was Asche. He went 3-for-4 with 4 runs scored and 2 RBI. He also hit this home run for the final tally. The Rangers never threatened after the seventh.
How do you feel about that win, Jonathan Papelbon?
I thought so. Good start to the season for the local baseball nine! I predict they don’t score 14 runs again this year.
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Read Philadelphia magazine’s Phillies 2014 season preview.