Welcome to Atlanta Jason Heyward! Just moments after catching the ceremonial first pitch from the legendary Hank Aaron, the 20 year old Jason Heyward showed Major League Baseball that he is indeed the real deal by blasting a laser beam home run to right field. I am just going to come out and say it. I have a man crush on the Braves left-handed phenom. There hasn’t been a player this young and talented since A-Rods rookie campaign. I know it’s early, but I’m expecting this kid to break a lot of rookie records. Heyward ended his opening day going 2-5 with 4 RBI’s. With a face full of shaving cream Heyward was quoted saying “I felt my legs, but I couldn’t hear myself think, it was so loud”. Teammate and long time Braves 3rd baseman Chipper Jones also said that he had never heard the stadium that loud.
The timeless Derek Lowe (1-0) was credited with the win going 6 innings giving up 5 hits, 5 runs, walking 3, and striking out 2. The word timeless may be an understatement due to the consistency Lowe brings to the mound each and every season. Entering his 13th season in the show Lowe has not once visited the disabled list. In a day and age where pitchers have gone soft with their hangnails, blisters, and back spasms, Lowe toughs it out, and does his job. Now Lowe isn’t Pedro in his prime, but consistent ground ball outs matched with a Ripken like toughness makes him the ultimate teammate in my book.
Yunel Escobar was over shadowed with all the Heyward hype. The Braves shortstop went 2-5 while driving in a career high 5 runs. Also contributing to the rout over Cubs was catcher Brian McCann who homered in the 2nd inning.
The Cubs started the game on fire as Marlon Byrd banged out a 3 run home run in the first inning. After the rocky 1st inning Atlanta really made themselves at home by dropping 16 opening day runs over the next 9 innings to make the final score 16-5. The 3 game series resumes action this Wednesday and Thursday from Turner Field. Atlanta’s mix of veteran leadership, solid pitching, and young talent will challenge Philadelphia for the NL East crown in 2010. I am also going to go out on a limb and say that Jason Heyward will never hit in the 7 slot ever again.
About the Author
Written by Bill Furey
My name is Bill Furey, and I am from Chelmsford, Massachusetts. I am 25 years old, and a complete baseball guru. This will be my first year blogging for major league baseball, and I am really looking forward to both voicing my opinion as well as covering games. As a former 3rd basemen for the University of Massachusetts-Lowell I got the amazing opportunity to compete, admire, and most importantly learn from some of the most talented players, and coaches this great game has to offer. Growing up in New England I have always been a die hard fan of the Sox, Pats, Celts, and Bruins. My love, understanding, and respect for the game of baseball takes major precedent in my life. I currently coach one of Massachusetts best 13 year old baseball teams. Teaching the game of baseball to young talented players is something I truly look forward to every time I take the field. The relationships I built from this wonderful game are better than any home run, stolen base, or any winning season. Baseball has given me life lessons I couldn't have learned anywhere else in the world. A baseball quote that best describes my passion for the game is this: "You see, you spend a good piece of your life gripping a baseball, and in the end it turns out that it was the other way around all the time." Jim Bouton, Ball Four, 1970. I look forward to covering the Atlanta Braves this season, and getting some great feedback from my followers. Play ball.