Baseball is officially back and the first full week of the regular season is in the books. Teams are starting to settle in and brace themselves for the marathon that is the MLB regular season. As the week wound down we learned some valuable things that could be beneficial as the year goes on and the dog days of summer come upon us. We first learned that a game is never over until it is over and when you play in the Bay Area you better brace yourself for some extra innings drama. We also learned that even though the bats in Philly may have started slow, on a cold Saturday night, they became as hot as the blazing desert in the dead heap of summer. Finally, we learned just how special a man from Japan is and how we are currently witnessing greatness and who knows, we could possibly be watching one of the next greats right in front of our eyes.
Saturday night on a cold, foggy night in San Fransisco, an old rivalry was taking place between the San Francisco Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers. The teams had been playing for hours and as the 14th inning came upon us, it had seemed like this one was never going to end. The Dodgers must have had dinner reservations however, because they were a unit on a mission in the top of the 14th. After three singles in a row by Yasiel Puig, Cody Bellinger and Logan Forsythe to start the inning, the Dodgers found themselves on the top step, and were ready to knock the door down and break the game open. They did in a way, but only managed to get one run across and entered the bottom half of the inning just three outs away from winning the marathon at the bay. The Giants were in no place to go down without a fight however, and found themselves with runners on the corners to start out the bottom half of the 14th. Stepping to the dish looking to be the hero was none other than the big offseason acquisition for the Giants, Andrew McCutchen. After a great AB that seemed like it took forever, Cutch drove a 2-2 pitch into the night, giving the boys from San Fran a huge win and making this game an instant classic. The second the ball left the bat, Cutch knew it was gone, and his celebration was priceless. It is moments like these that makes us love the game of baseball so much and why it is the best game on earth.
The Philadelphia Phillies came into Saturday night with one of the worst offenses in Major League Baseball. Although the season is still so young, the Phils had struggled to even place consecutive hits together and fans wondered what was going on with this supposedly much improved offense. All those doubts went away after Saturday’s offensive outburst. The Phillies defeated the Miami Marlins by the score of, and I am not making this up, twenty to one. The Phillies offense exploded for twenty runs on twenty hits and put the league on notice. They also hit two grand slams, collected 17 runs in the first four innings and hit four home runs in total. An offensive outburst like this does not happen every day so when it does it does not go unnoticed. It was also much-needed for a struggling offense and can give a team a boat load of confidence heading into the future. The Phillies motto for 2018 is to be bold but on Saturday night they were so much more, they were unstoppable.
Shohei Ohtani coming into this season was one of the most hyped up prospects in recent baseball history. He has been compared to the Babe, a guy that can both pitch and hit and do both at an extremely high rate. So far, Ohtani has exceeded those expectations in his rookie campaign. During the week, Ohtani hit his first major league home run, followed by his second, and then his third all in consecutive games. To homer in three straight games as a rookie is extremely hard to do and to do it at such an early point in the season makes it that much more commendable. To make the rookie sensations week even more impressive than it already was, Ohtani decided to throw an absolute gem in his home debut. Othani had his stuff working the entire night and was a strikeout machine. He seemed untouchable and I am a superstitious guy, but even I was thinking perfect game. Othani retired the first 19 batters he faced before giving up a single to Marcus Semien in the top of the 7th which broke up the perfect game. Othani finished the game with 7IP, only 1 hit allowed, 12 SO and a big fat W to go with it. It is safe to say that Ohtani has thus far lived up to the hype surrounding him and it is looking like this kid could be the future face of baseball.