Monday, April 03, 2006

Opening Day Game Log

What a great day for Opening Day Baseball. Hope is alive and well for all teams at this point. I will have a running log of today's action as the Cubs take on the Reds. Ok, more in a few minutes.

First Pitch- The Cubs and Reds get to see President Bush throw out the first pitch. Bush shows the Reds love with wearing a team jacket. Come on, you want my vote, then at least go neutral. His pitch makes it across the pitch, but it is wide and outside.

It is about time......Lets get 2006 Started

1:31 p.m.: Aaron Harang's first pitch is right down the middle for a strike to start the season. How about that, Juan Pierre triples to start the season. Todd Walker follows that with a double. Eat your heart out Jim and Dusty. This is the reason Walker needs to play everyday. Walker has a 0-2 count and slaps the ball down the left field line. Cubs 1-0 with no outs. Derrek Lee walks and still no outs for the Cubs. This is something I could get used to. Aramis dumps a single into left and the bases are loaded. Jones steps up and we are about to see if another off-season move pays off for the Cubs. He quickly is down 0-1 after swinging at a ball. Jones slaps the ball to left and Dunn drops the ball for an error. Cubs 2-0 and still no outs. Reds catch a break as they double off Barrett and Ramirez. Holy Cow, Matt Murton just hit a 2-out 3-run home run. Cubs up 5-0, what a start to 2006. Ronny Cedeno pops out to end the inning, but still Cubs 5-0.

1:45 p.m.: Carlos Zambrano on the mound and he opens the game with a walk to Cub Killer Tony Womack. Not a great start after your team spots you five runs. Lopez follows the walk with a single to right. As soon as we get our hopes up, the Cubs bring us back to earth. Wow, a walk to Ken Griffey Jr. and now the bases are loaded with no outs. Adam Dunn and his all or nothing swing steps to the plate. Pierre's bad arm allows all runners to tag and advance on Dunn's sac fly. Pierre's arm might be a little of a problem this year. Zambrano gets a big strikeout with runners at second and third. One more out and Carlos gets out of a major jam. Scott Hatteberg draws a walk to load the bases again. Again, I am worried this year might be the year Carlos finally breaks down. How he has not done so yet, is beyond me, the way Dusty and Larry abuse pitchers. Austin Kearns up as Zambrano is at 28 pitches and counting. We are reminded that Carlos could not get out of Opening Day last year with a big lead. That is probably going to be the case today as he rakes up more pitches. Matt Murton is now my favorite Cub after his leaping grab to save at least two runs and get the Cubs out of the first inning. Cubs 5-1.

1:54 p.m.: After the great start, the Cubs go down in order in the second. This is more like the Cubs I know.

2:02 p.m.: Pierre makes a nifty catch to start the Red's half of the second. Harang goes down swinging, nice to see Carlos bounce back. Terrible defense by Jones allows Womack to double with two-outs. This is a key at bat for Big Z. Felipe Lopez led all short stops with home runs last year. Lopez gets a swinging bunt and Barrett retires him to end the inning. Well, so far so good, but I would like to see about two more runs in the top of the third for the Cubs.

2:05 p.m.: After some nice at bats early, the Cubs have really failed to put together much since the first. Looks like Baseball Tonight could just have Web Gems from this game. Dunn makes a nice grab to rob Jones of extra bases.

2:12 p.m. Griffey grounds out and then Dunn busts a bat for a single. If there is one guy you can say that is not on steroids it has to be Dunn. I man, he is huge, but it looks all natural. Carlos getting in more trouble after another walk to put two runners on with one out. That is four walks and the Reds finally make the Cubs pay. Hatteberg hammers a ball to right for a 3-run home run. Cubs 5-4 with one out and so it begins. Carlos comes back strong to strikeout Kearns. You get the feeling this is going to be a 10-9 type of game.

2:25 p.m. Barrett gets the fourth inning started with a double. It would be nice for the Cubs to respond here. Murton's day can't be perfect as he bounces back to the pitcher. Well, the leadoff double does nothing and the Cubs still lead 5-4. The dark cloud is starting to hang over us.

2:35 p.m. Womack finally is retire in the game. The Cubs turn a nifty double play to end the inning

2:45 p.m. Pierre almost reaches on a bunt, but gets thrown out on a nice play. Todd Walk doubles for the second time today. Cough*Dusty play Todd all the time*cough. Oh sorry I had something stuck. I doubt Lee gets much to hit here. Cubs leave two more on base, but still hold a 5-4 lead.

2:50 p.m. Dunn leaves the yard in a hurry to tie the game. Dusty makes a crazy double switch in fifth inning. How do you burn your starting RF in the fifth? Only Dusty knows. Second year in a row that Carlos has been staked a big lead and will not get the win.

3:28 p.m. The Cubs are scoring runs in bunches now and Todd Walker is showing all that he is the second baseman. Five straight hits for the Cubs and they are up 9-5. Lee doubles off the wall to score another run. Even Neifi Perez getting into the action now with a RBI single. The Cubs are up 11-5. The Cubs have the bases loaded and not outs yet recorded. The Cubs have batted around in the sixth. Barrett bounces into a double play, but another run scores. I love Murton, up 12-5 and he takes a walk.

3:40 p.m. Oh good god. Dusty is killing me. First off, he doubles switches again and pulls Walker out of the game. Then, Scott Williamson comes on and loads the bases. Scott Eyre comes in and earns his millions today as he only gives up one run with the bases loaded. Not a bad first outing.

3:54 p.m. So, all three secondbasemen get a hit today. Dusty looks smart to some, but we all know better. Lee draws a third walk and looks to be in midseason form with his eye at the plate. Cubs fail to score, but still lead 12-6 heading to the bottom of the 7th inning.

4:09 p.m. Bottom of the 7th: After the great start by Eyre, he walks the leadoff guy. That is eight walks too many for the Cubs. Great diving play by Ramirez, but he can't Kearns. The Reds have something brewing with two on and no out. Wow, a ball dropped ball by Derrek Lee and the Cubs only get one out. The Error leads to a walk to Ryan Freel and now the bases are loaded. It looks like the other high priced reliever Bob Howry might be called on, but Dusty stays with Eyre. A sac fly cuts the lead to 12-7 with two outs. Wow, a late called strike three gets the Cubs out of the 7th inning.

4:20 p.m. Adam Dunn gets some load cheers as he finally tracks down a fly ball in left. Okay, Murton takes a pitch the other way with two strikes. I am buying my Murton jersey later this week. John Maybry makes his Cubs debut and is retire. Cubs lead 12-7.

4:29 p.m. Howry comes in and gives up a single to Griffey to start the 8th. Ok, Dusty gets lucky as Hairston snags a ball off the bat of Dunn. Howry settles down and gets the final two batters. To the 9th and the good guys still lead 12-7.

4:40 p.m. Cubs load the bases in the 9th after an error allows Hairston to reach first on a sac bunt. Lee just misses a grand slam, but picks up a RBI on the sac fly. Cubs up 13-7. Niefi up and he could really get off to a good start with a hit, but he bounces into a fielder's choice. Score another run 14-7. Ok, I would love to stay for the final out, but I have to head to my game. I will post my comments and thoughts on day one later. Go Cubs get three more outs.