Phillies 5, Astros 4
Game 1 - Friday Afternoon, April 1st in Philadelphia
One Sentence Summary: Capped by John Mayberry, Jr.'s drive to center, the Phillies strung together six singles in the bottom of the ninth, scoring three times and walking off with a 5-4 opening day win.
What It Means: It means it's a great way to start a season! Before the heroics from Mayberry and Wilson Valdez, the story was going to be how former Phillies Brett Myers (7 innings, allowing two runs on three hits) and Michael Bourn (2-run triple in the seventh) exacted revenge on their original team. Valdez' single in the ninth tied it and Mayberry's won it.
What Went Right: In the ninth, the Astros brought in closer Brandon Lyon to hold a 4-2 lead. Lyon would retire just one batter as Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard, Ben Francisco, Carlos Ruiz, Valdez and finally, Mayberry, all reached on singles. Roy Halladay only pitched six innings as the Astros showed a knack for working deep counts and fouling off a ton of pitches. He left after 102 pitches having allowed a run on five hits while striking out six.
What Went Wrong: The offense managed just four hits through the first eight innings. In the seventh, J.C. Romero failed to retire the one batter he came in to face and then David Herndon coughed up a single, Bourn's triple and a sacrifice fly to give the Astros their 4-2 lead.
Featured Card: I'm still putting the finishing touches on Mayberry's 2011 Chachi card, so here's his 2010 Chachi card, which I failed to post during the 2010 season.
Other Stuff: Ryan Madson pied Mayberry during the latter's post-game interview. . . The Phillies wore a black "B" on the front of their jerseys in honor of brothers Jim and Whip Buck, two long-time owners who passed away this past winter.