I know the reason. Weather can be fluky, especially in early April, so teams in certain climates without a covered stadium need to schedule a day off immediately following opening day just in case there is rain or snow.
If it were otherwise, the team would have to re-schedule the opening day game for sometime much later in the season. If that happened, fans who went out of their way to buy tickets to opening day would be left to get tickets to the makeup game later in the season or any other game during the year. Moreover, fans who just happen to have tickets to the second game of the year would suddenly luck into tickets for the opening day game. No team wants that unfairness, so day two is often an open day.
Yeah, I know the reason, but I don't like it. Not at all. Day two of the baseball season is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. In fact, it is the absolute worst day of the baseball season.
The off-season is long. For the Phillies this past off-season, it was longer than we'd come to expect. Six agonizing months of thinking about Roy Halladay's arm, Chase Utley's knees, Ryan Howard's ankle, Carlos Ruiz's pharmaceuticals, Ruben Amaro's wisdom (or lack thereof), Delmon Young's weight, Michael Young's glove, Domonic Brown's swing, Darin Ruf's defense, Mike Adams' shoulder, Cliff Lee's wins, and Cole Hamels' mustache. When we weren't agonizing about the trivial, we were watching baseball games involving minor leaguers who will never see a major league inning face major leaguers who clearly didn't care.
But then April 1 arrived, and the long wait was over. Chase Utley was back, and back in a big way. Ryan Howard was healthy and batting cleanup. Ben Revere and Jimmy Rollins were at the top of the order ready to terrorize opposing batteries. Cole Hamels had his normal first start jitters. The Braves, even without Bobby Cox and Chipper Jones, still blew chunks. And unfortunately, the Phillies still lost.
No matter, though, because baseball was back. And all was good in the world.
Until the next day, when the cruelty of the MLB scheduling office rips the growing excitement right out of our hands. And we wake up realizing we have to wait once again. This time just 45 hours, but 45 hours is too much. We had our taste of the real thing, and we want more.
We don't want to wait until tomorrow. Waiting is what the off-season is for.