They trotted onto the field via red carpet, ensconced in crisp pinstripes with a tint of gold. The crowd serenaded them as they lined up on the field. Yes, the 2009 Phillies arrived at Citizens Bank Park in style — they just didn’t bring the whole game with them.
The Phillies lost, 4-1, to the Braves, as Derek Lowe mastered the lineup with his dazzling slider. He went eight innings, giving up just two hits and a slew of groundouts. On the other side, Brett Myers didn’t match Lowe. The opening night starter allowed three home runs en route to a six-inning, four-run shellacking. The homers were bad pitches — a 2-0 changeup (his worst pitch), a turnpike fastball to a first-pitch swinger (Jeff Francoeur) and a softball to rookie Jordan Schafer. Myers struck out six.
A slight rally in the ninth ended with strikeouts by Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez. Eric Bruntlett — the hottest hitter since the spring started — doubled off Mike Gonzalez. Jayson Werth singled him home for the lone run.
The Phillies lost their last two season openers, so that’s nice consolation.