Happy Opening Day, everyone.
With a half-dozen unpacked suitcases strew around his desk, manager Clint Hurdle yesterday talked to reporters who crammed into his office. “We’re extremely excited to be back,” Hurdle said. “Ten weeks down in Florida, the team put its time in. It’s time to play ball. We’re very optimistic. We’re improved across the board. We’ve got more depth in our starting pitching. We’ve got a bullpen that’s going to be very efficient — it will be even more efficient, depending upon the innings the starters give us. Our position player pool is definitely stronger, more versatile, more athletic. We’re just a better club. We’ve got to go prove it on the field now.”
»»» It’s magnetic schedule day. Sister Mary Bride Diamond, a member of Pittsburgh’s Sisters of Charity for 59 years, will be honored as the “fan of the game.” One of her “bucket list” items was to be surrounded by the Pirates on the field at PNC Park. Army Ranger Jeremy Feldbusch, who was injured during a tour of duty in Iraq, will throw the ceremonial first pitch. Feldbusch will represent the Wounded Warriors Project.
Game 1: Philadelphia @ Pirates, 1:35 p.m. ET
Phillies (0-0) – 1. Shane Victorino cf, 2. Placido Polanco 3b, 3. Jimmy Rollins ss, 4. Hunter Pence rf, 5. Ty Wigginton 1b, 6. John Mayberry lf, 7. Carlos Ruiz c, 8. Freddy Galvis 2b, 9. Roy Halladay rhp (season debut)
Pirates (0-0) – 1. Alex Presley lf, 2. Jose Tabata rf, 3. Andrew McCutchen cf, 4. Neil Walker 2b, 5. Garrett Jones 1b, 6. Rod Barajas c, 7. Pedro Alvarez 3b, 8. Clint Barmes ss, 9. Erik Bedard lhp (season debut)