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4/3/06 - OPENING DAY - Cardinals at Phillies, C. Carpenter vs. J. Lieber

An absolutely gorgeous weekend in Philadelphia would have been perfect for Opening Day, and it was great for a couple exhibition games against the Red Sox, but the weather looks pretty bleak on Monday for The Real Thing.  I bet we get this thing in, but it's gonna be pretty dreary and gray, with a delay or two.  What better way to start off the season?  Focus on the game people!

Reigning NL Cy Young Award winner Chris Carpenter brings his 0-0 record and n/a ERA to the newly renovated Citizens Bank Park to take on Jon Lieber, he of the 0-0 and n/a ERA as well.

Opening Day is the only time when I allow myself to get maudlin (other than those Mama's Family marathons they run on TV Land every once in awhile).  I like other sports, but I only truly love baseball.  Opening Day is like the first day of the New Year for me.  I know there are others like me, but we're a dying breed.

Let's hope that the Phillies carry over their red-hot play from the Grapefruit League, where they went 19-11 (with a couple of ties thrown in).

Let's hope that Ryan Howard really is Roy Hobbs Jr.

Let's hope that Chase Utley cements his already massive legend.

Let's hope that, sometime later this month, Jimmy Rollins can steal the Greatest Record in All of Sports(TM) from Mr. Coffee.  Joe was an ornery son of a bitch, but somehow I think he might approve of another Bay Area kid making a run at him.

Let's hope that Bobby Abreu can be, well, Bobby Abreu for at least one more season.  Trade rumors notwithstanding, he's the greatest Phillie since Mike Schmidt and deserves all of the accolades that he's finally getting.

And let's hope the pitching staff can keep it together!

And let's take a minute to remember Jeff Lamana, whose pioneering work in the field of online sports journalism, commentary, and discussion helped pave the way for sites like this one.  Goodbye Jeff, and be good.