April 12, 2022

1. Brett Phillips was the star of stars last night

He had a brilliant, sliding catch in right field earlier in the game, and then in what turned out to be a blowout loss — the real fireworks came out.

Baseball’s favorite moment: Brett Phillips the pitcher.

And then, with the shift on, no third baseman in sight, a pop-up in foul territory — and the absolute play of the night:

He was wheeling, dealing, throwing 46-mph junkballs and got through his first inning unscathed in just five pitches — and then, the miracle run deflated (and ERA inflated) with a massive grand slam.

Remember that greatest of debuts on the mound last summer?

2. The Blue Jays shut out the Yankees in their first matchup of the year

This will be the ongoing battle to watch in the A.L. East, and in round one it goes to the Canadians — highlighted by two timely plays in the field by Bo Bichette. First, with the bases loaded in the third, a tenuous two-run lead and a hard-hit ball from Giancarlo Stanton:

And then in the seventh, two runners on — and a spin from the second baseman, then a spin from Bichette, for the double play. Baseball beauty:

3. And the Phillies take round one against the Mets with a big comeback win

These two and the Braves look like they’ll be fighting it out all season, and so the first match-up last night went Philly’s way with a dramatic eight-inning comeback.

4. Earlier in the game, Alec Bohm had a meltdown

Three throwing errors in each of the first three innings, and the lip readers of the world caught what he had to say, with boos roaring from the crowd:

Here were the errors:

5. Shohei Ohtani gave CPR to his dead bat

He’s batting just .143 so far, with no home runs — and some emergency measures had to take place.

6. Bobby Cox got a 2021 World Series ring hand-delivered

7. Apple TV tried to hire Bill Simmons for their MLB broadcasts

Would’ve been an improvement over the almost-universally panned booth teams this past Friday (in both games).

8. The defensive plays of the day

Other than the Brett Phillips gem, of course.

9. A pitch you’ve never heard about before: The “grunt changeup”

10. Two twin brothers exchanged lineup cards last night

11. The Rockies vs. Rangers game ended in controversy

The home opener in Arlington, and a deflating end-by-replay-review with that rule about needing to slide meekly into second base.

12. The unusual highlight of the day: Dancing with the umpire

And then another umpire, the most infamous, dancing on his own:

13. The breakout star of Opening Week: Steven Kwan

14. This is the tweet of the day

Maybe the line of the season, even. Bravo.

15. This guy’s bat is on fire, literally

Might have to take a road trip down to this Savannah team sometime.

16. And lastly, the hit-by-pitch of the season

Forrest Gump: “Right in the butt-tocks.”

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