Pirates 4, Cardinals 1 – Francisco Liriano was the story for the Bucs, striking out 10 Redbirds in his Opening Day start. Liriano also put Pittsburgh on the board with an RBI single. Liriano ran into some trouble, loading the bases with a 2-0 lead and 2 outs in the top of the 6th inning, but ex-Cardinal David Freese – a stop-gap, perhaps, until Jung Ho Kang is ready to play again – played a short hop nicely down at third to start an inning-ending 5-4 fielder’s choice. Matt Adams came up as the potential tying runner in the top of the 9th, but flew out to center. Tommy Pham went down with an oblique injury for the Cards early on in the contest.
PIRATES 4, CARDINALS 1
San Francisco (0-0) @ Milwaukee (0-0) – Wily Peralta gets the Opening Day nod for the rebuilding Brew Crew, fresh off a 5-10, 4.72 season. Not the kind of numbers you’d expect for a #1, but there’s not a whole lot of other options out there for them. He’s up against Madison Bumgarner with the first pitch coming at 1:10 CT in Wisconsin.
Philadelphia (0-0) @ Cincinnati (0-0) – Raul Iglesias is getting some hype coming into the 2016 as a guy that could be a breakout star for the Reds. We’ll be spending the 2016 season waiting for Cincy to trade in their assets to build for the future, what with three other teams clearly the class of the division. Then again, we wrote that at the start of 2015 as well and they never really jumped on board. Not sure what management is thinking there, but it’s not reality. Game starts at 3:10 CT.
Chicago (0-0) @ Los Angeles (0-0) – The season of hype is upon us as the Cubs start off on the West Coast against Mike Trout and 24 other guys not named Mike Trout. First pitch is 9:05 CT. Jake Arrieta is fresh off of throwing about 90 more innings in a professional season than he ever has before. The wear and tear showed in the playoffs. Yes, he shut out the Pirates in the Wild Card game, but if you watched the game then you know he didn’t have his A game. Plenty of hard-hit balls that ended up being hit right at people. There was a bit of luck involved in that win. The Halos have Garrett Richards on the mound and I’ve seen his name show up in a half-dozen places as a pre-season pick for AL Cy Young. Should be a good watch.