D’backs’ Opening Day Observations


Gerardo Parra is congratulated by Aaron Hill after scoring in the seventh inning against the St. Louis Cardinals during opening day at Chase Field. Image: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Here is an easy question to answer.  Isn’t it great to have baseball back?

The Arizona Diamondbacks continued their success on Opening Day by thumping the St. Louis Cardinals by a score of 6-2.  The victory marked the seventh straight triumph in Game One affairs, tied for the longest such streak in baseball with the Seattle Mariners.  Here are some thoughts I had while watching the game last night and reliving the highlights this morning.

Gerardo Parra and A.J. Pollock mean business.  So what if two-thirds of a starting outfield begin the season on the Disabled List?  Parra was the hitting star last night going 4-5 with three doubles and a run scored batting leadoff and starting in right field.  His one out was a bullet lined off the arm of Cards’ pitcher Adam Wainwright.  Pollock, the former first-round pick had a banner day at the plate as well going 3 for 4 with two RBI’s while playing center field and hitting in the seventh spot in the order.  His speed was on display in the second inning as he legged out an infield hit on a ball chopped in the infield between third and short.  These two guys will make things very interesting for manager Kirk Gibson once Cody Ross and Adam Eaton return from the DL.

Ian Kennedy looked great.  He was overshadowed by Clayton Kershaw, Felix Hernandez and Jeff Samardzija on Monday.  However, Kennedy’s performance later that night was brilliant.  He gave up single runs in the first and seventh innings and was totally dominant in between, allowing only one baserunner (a Pete Kozma walk) from innings two through six.  Kennedy’s line was seven innings pitched, allowing two earned runs one five hits, walking one and striking out eight.   The win made was the third straight for the right-hander on Opening Day assignments.

Brandon Webb looked bummed.  The former Cy Young award winner threw out the ceremonial first pitch before last night’s game.  Later, he was interviewed by FOX Sports’s Todd Walsh and was asked about how it felt to be back on the mound.  You can tell that he really misses playing; his career was essentially cut short at the tender age of 30.  Now, a month from his 34th birthday, he should have been at Chase Field throwing out the real first pitch last night.

Looking forward to Game number 2 tonight.

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