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The Wrap: NL

NL Quote of the Night:

"We lost our voice today. He has loved our game and made just a tremendous contribution to our sport and certainly to our organization."

-- Phillies President David Montgomery, who succinctly summed up all that Harry Kalas came to embody, not only for the Phillies, but for baseball in general.

Phillies 9, Nationals 8
On a day which started with the nearly unthinkable, the Nationals home opener ended in the only way 40,000+ fans could have realistically imagined: A loss. Now the team has to deal with a pending injury to its hottest hitter and a fan base that is growing increasingly disgruntled. According to Boz, some of the Nats are keeping a positive outlook. Here's hoping the fans are able to do the same for a while.

Pirates 7, Astros 0
Don't look now, but the Pirates are 5-2 and, well, they look pretty solid. This win was clearly all about Zach Duke, who pitched a complete game shutout in upstaging Houston's Brian Moehler, who truth be told, looks positively awful through two games. Who knows if either pitcher can keep up their pace, for better and worse.

Cubs 4, Rockies 0
Forget Carlos Zambrano, Ryan Dempster and Rich Harden. All the Cubs need is Ted Lilly. The former Blue Jays starter carried a no-hitter for 6 2/3 innings, then watched the team's new bullpen hold on for a shut out. Kevin Gregg made things interesting again in the ninth, but got a save by leaving a runner stranded on second.

Dodgers 11, Giants 1
Now this is how you rout a rival at a home opener. Not only did the Dodgers completely dominate their Monday matinee against their Nor Cal archrivals, they showed that they really may have more pitching depth than people think. This time it was Chad Billingsley who was incredibly effective for seven innings, all while watching Orlando Hudson put up the first cycle of the season. Wonder if the Nats still think that wouldn't have been helpful, don't you? And speaking of local baseball, more bad news for fans of all things District related: Local product Emmanuel Burriss is hitting a paltry .100 as the Giants' starting second baseman. Ouch.

Padres 6, Mets 5
How badly did the Mets want to win their home opener at Citi Field? Badly enough that they brought out new closer Francisco Rodriguez for the top of the ninth inning, even though they were trailing. They should have known things weren't going to go their way when starter Mike Pelfrey slipped off the mound in mid delivery in the third inning, then tried to laugh it off ... and promptly surrendered a double. In fact, the best synopsis came from the AP's Mike Fitzpatrick: "The place looked gorgeous. The Mets looked lost." Truer words were never written.

Reds 7, Brewers 6
The headlines will all be about Edwin Encarnacion's grand slam, a blast which did lift the Reds to a win. Yet maybe they should be talking about how this series could really set the stage for what both teams can expect this year. Clearly, the Brewers have taken a significant step backward from their NL Wild Card team of 2008. The question is whether the Reds and a handful of other teams have taken big enough steps forward to contend in Milwaukee's stead. Well, if Encarnacion keeps slugging drives like that, they probably have.

Cardinals 2, Diamondbacks 1
You know how there are those stretches in life when you feel like you can't catch a break? Arizona knows exactly what you mean. The Diamondbacks held the Cardinals to a single run through 7+ innings, then gave up a solo home run to a man who had never hit one in the major leagues, costing them a much-needed win to get back on track. And who was the guy to put Arizona back in its misery? Why, a former Diamondbacks prospect, of course.

By Cameron Smith  |  April 14, 2009; 8:44 AM ET
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Next: The Wrap: AL


What happened to the title 'Nocturnal Omissions?' Re-titling these 'The Wrap' is so boring.

Posted by: ilikeike | April 15, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

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