It was a crazy afternoon in North Texas.
The Phillies cracked 17 hits and added six walks, beating the Rangers 14-10, scoring the most runs on Opening Day since 1900.
We’ve Got the Runs
-Offensively challenged is a term I would use to describe the Phillies during the last few seasons. Since the start of 2012, the Phils reached the 10-run plateau only 11 times. Since 2011, they’ve scored 14 or more runs in a game just four times. Other fun-with-numbers: It took the Phillies 81 games to reach double digits last season, and of course, just one this season.
-Marlon Byrd and Jimmy Rollins both homered. It’s been a long, long time since that’s happened.
Byrd & Rollins went 3,524 days btwn HRing as teammates (11th longest A-T). #1 is Canseco-T.Phillips–4,394 days. http://t.co/NepY92nGAo
— Baseball Reference (@baseball_ref) March 31, 2014
-The second inning was one of the best innings by the Phillies I’ve seen in ages. They walked three times, hit a bunch of balls hard, and ended it with six runs. According to my colleague Corey Seidman, the Phillies walked three times in an inning only six times last year. Jimmy Rollins helped by hitting his 200th career bomb, a grand slam, in the frame. They’ll need many more innings like that this year if they want to compete.
-Rollins also became just the 10th player in major league history to reach 200 homers and 400 stolen bases. Is he Hall of Fame worthy?
-Ryan Howard struck out three times, but overall I thought he looked fairly comfortable in the box. Good to see him collect two hits in his first game of the year. Cody Asche went yard and collected two hits. Ben Revere smacked three hits and knocked in three runs.
Not a Pitchers Duel
-Cliff Lee was not sharp at all, yet got a victory. Honestly, he was throwing a lot of junk up there, which is very unlike the normally-crisp hurler. Lee allowed eight runs on 11 hits in five innings, just the fourth time in Cliff Lee’s fantastic career that he allowed eight runs or more in a game. Probably not an issue moving forward – a lot of guys get shelled in Arlington – but disheartening out of the gate nonetheless.
-Maybe overlooked – or maybe not – was the fact that the Phillies got a gift by not having to face Yu Darvish, the AL Cy Young runner-up last season. Tanner Scheppers stepped in, and the Phillies offense took full advantage.