Finally, our long, cold winter is over: baseball is back!

No, Joey Votto isn’t starting, and Jay Bruce and Homer Bailey are on their way to Louisville. None of that matters too much. I’m even going to try not to get too upset at the fact that our leadoff hitter today sports a sub-300 on-base percentage.

It’s Opening Day, a day for those gooey, “Field of Dreams” baseball fans among us to celebrate the return of our national pastime. I’m one of those fans, and I can’t wait for the first pitch.

Great pitching matchup on day one, with two studs on the mound. The Reds will send Aaron Harang out to face Arizona’s Brandon Webb.

Here’s hoping the Reds start the year off the right way. As an old guy said to me a few years ago on Opening Day: “you can’t win them all unless you win the first one.”

Indeed. I’ll be at Great American Ballpark enjoying the game along with at least two other Redleg Nation editors. Expect plenty of coverage and reaction throughout the day here.

Comment away! There’s a lot to be excited about today.

About The Author

Blame Chad for creating this mess. Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, "The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds" is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad's musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine. You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.

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47 Responses

  1. DevilsAdvocate

    😀 Despite the snow falling outside my window, our long winter is over. Bring on the game! 😀

  2. Twill815

    I’m looking for Harang to seek out revenge on Webb for that Cy Young award he stole 2 years ago! Can’t wait to hear the Nuxhall tribute 700wlw is doing at 1pm! Go Reds!

  3. nick

    Go Reds! Baseball season doesn’t start until the Reds have played. The other games played yesterday and in Japan were frauds.

  4. Sultan of Swaff

    I shelled out $230 bucks yesterday for the DirecTV baseball package (I live in IL). I sure hope I’ll be getting my money’s worth come September. Please let it be meaningful. Go Reds!!

  5. DevilsAdvocate

    Weather in Cincinnati looks quite rainy . . .

  6. Jared

    The package I got from Dish has the regional Fox channels in HD. For $5 a month more than I was going to pay, I think it’s better than MLB.TV.

    Has anyone else been to the Field of Dreams?

  7. Matt B.

    Sigh, I guess it’s going to be a rain delay.

  8. DevilsAdvocate

    Grounds-crew is rolling back the tarp. Marty sez gametime tentatively set for 45 minutes from now, about 3pm EST.

  9. Chris

    Dr. Rosenrosen (Trent) has confirmed the 3:00ish start. Pre-game on-field hoo-ha is apparently ongoing.

  10. DevilsAdvocate

    Didn’t take long to get the first Bananaphone songplay. Hope Adam Dunn will call in.

  11. DevilsAdvocate

    So Harang is wearing a Nuxhall name & number on his uniform today. Here’s the first pitch…

  12. DevilsAdvocate

    Strike 3 called. Sweet start.

  13. DevilsAdvocate

    Whoops. Inauspicious first fielding play – Edwin error. He had a terrible start last year too, didn’t he? 9 or 10 errors before being sent down in early May?

  14. Andy

    sounds like the ball is slippery. LLM getting no love from the cowboy: “there’s no number 1 catcher on any team in baseball that lets that ball get through,” re: Harang’s WP.

  15. DevilsAdvocate

    Yup, a throwing error on Edwin. Made a good play on a hard-hit smash but threw it away, Hatteberg couldn’t quite get it and make the tag. After the wild pitch and RBI single, an unearned run but a run nonetheless; 1-0 Arizona with the Reds coming up.

  16. DevilsAdvocate

    Marty’s got the March madness – “fields it and takes a left-hand turn towards the basket–uh, base…”

  17. Justin

    Harang in control so far 1-2-3…..2 dominate strike outs in 2nd

  18. Bill

    From ESPN:

    Coaches and players donned jerseys that had Nuxhall’s No. 41 and his name on the back. All but starting pitcher Aaron Harang switched into their regular jerseys for the game.

    Harang got permission from the commissioner’s office to wear his Nuxhall jersey during the game and then donate it to the team’s hall of fame.

  19. Andy

    so far everyone seems to be avoiding clogging up the bases per manager’s instructions. hack away, men.

  20. Jared

    I guess Dusty’s alternative to clogging the bases is clearing them. See Arizona.

  21. DevilsAdvocate

    Woof. Tough third inning for Harang.

  22. Andy

    all of the sudden harang can’t find the strike zone?

  23. Jared

    Harang at 66 pitches with 3 hits and 3 runs through 3 innings. Sheesh. I hope the bullpenis (forgive me for not fixing this typo, but I just can’t) 1000x better than last year.

  24. DevilsAdvocate

    Say, anyone know who got cut from the 40-man to make room for Voltron, Cueto, and Mercker?

  25. GregD

    And Richie Gardner, which was a surprise, IMHO.

  26. Chris

    Stanton also. Ross, Belisle to DL. I think that might be it.

  27. DK

    Get ready for a sac fly for the Donk.

    Are you ready? Ok. Stay ready for a while.

  28. Chad

    Its stopped raining and Harang has pitched great the last 2 innings. Things are looking better here at the old ballpark.

  29. DevilsAdvocate

    Wow – Marty reports that Voltron & Belisle both pitched gems in their last extended-spring-training appearances. I can’t believe how optimistic I am about the end of the starting rotation.

  30. DevilsAdvocate

    Oh dear – the Reds have appropriated the Dodgers’ “innovation” from last year and now have an all-you-can-eat seating area at the ballpark.

    They named it after Jeff Brantley. That’s not even a joke.

  31. GregD

    I almost put Burton as the first man out of the pen (in the PS3 game contest) but opted for Coffey.

  32. Jared

    I went with Bray. And Freel as the PH. Guess my average is right there with C-Pat.

  33. Jared

    Oh yeah — I really am 0-4 like Patterson. Harang ain’t a winner. At least, I hope he isn’t the first winning pitcher.

  34. Ben

    Well, I put Stanton for first out of the pen, so I was pleasantly surprise.

  35. Mike Martz

    Well that didn’t turn out like I wanted it to. I’m just happy that the season has started so I’ll let this one slide!

  36. Y-City Jim

    Couldn’t watch the game since I was sitting in a dentist chair most of the time. The dentist had a TV in my room but it didn’t get the upper cable channels for some odd reason.

    So how many of the 10 K’s were swinging? Our 1-2 hitters crapped out at setting the table.

  37. Abner

    Definitely hoping for some hits from Kepp. PRetty nice rally for 2 runs, but shoulda been more.

    I’m with Mike Martz – stoked the season has begun, but it always feels like a tease with the Tuesday off day.

  38. airguitarducks

    im happy its here
    at least we didnt give up more than five
    its nice when the pen only gives up one

  39. Chris

    Just watching the game on Tivo. Random thoughts:

    – Nuxhall tribute was very, very cool. I think a lot of people are missing Nuxy today – me included.

    – It’s a pleasure to see Harang on the mound. I’d forgotten how much I enjoy watching him pitch.

    – Grande is in mid-season form. He mentions how the D’Backs were the first team to make the playoffs despite being outscored. “They did it with pitching and defense,” he says, as if that makes a bit of sense.

    To his and Welsh’s credit, it eventually came out that the D’Backs actually “did it” (made the playoffs) with good bullpen work and absurd good luck in one-run games.

    – Kepp and Dunn have some comical hair.

    – Much like Harang, I enjoy watching Brandon Webb pitch. He’s a badass.

  40. CeeKeR

    Ugh, the top of our lineup was brutal today…but at least they didn’t clog up the bases right? (I know, I know, terrible joke and it’s been done 100 times…) The worst part about losing opening day is you have to wait two days ’til you get to try again…