Spring Training Game 1 - Sunday Afternoon, February 28th in Lakeland
Record - 0-1
One Sentence Summary: The Phillies were trounced by the Tigers in their 2021 spring training debut, dropping this game by a score of 10-2.
What It Means: After a particularly tough winter and what seemed like a small eternity since the Phillies last played enjoyable baseball, we'll need to wait a little longer for the Phillies to play enjoyable baseball. Still, on a rainy and dreary Sunday in February, it was wonderful to be able to listen to this game via the Tigers' radio broadcast.
What Happened: Phillies starting pitcher Ivan Nova was ineffective and didn't last through the first inning. Nova, relievers Jonathan Hennigan and JD Hammer combined to throw 1 2/3 innings, allowing 6 hits and 8 runs on 8 walks. Four Tigers runs scored on bases loaded walks. On the plus side, reliever Bryan Mitchell threw two scoreless innings and struck out 3. The offense couldn't get much going against the Tigers, tallying only four hits.
Featured Card: One of the few highlights in this game for the Phillies was the lead-off opposite-field home run hit by Adam Haseley on the second pitch thrown of the spring. With the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, I didn't get a chance to feature many 2020 baseball cards so I'll try to make up for that this spring. This is Haseley's card from the 1993-inspired Topps Finest Flashbacks set, released last July.
Camp Head Count: 72 - 1 + 2 = 73 - Just like everything else, this year's spring training is a little different with Covid protocols limiting the number of overall players in camp. To explain my math here, the Phillies started out with 40 players on their 40-man roster on February 17th, 13 non-roster invitees and 19 mini-camp invitees. These mini-camp invitees are minor league players who will be training at the minor league facilities but will be available for the exhibition games. It's possible, but not likely, any of the mini-camp players could ultimately make the big club for opening day.