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Happy Opening Day, NJ

Two Opening Day games have already been postponed, and more could follow, I suppose. (Mets-Reds doesn't sound promising; neither does Cards-Pirates.)

But the forecast for Miami at 4 p.m. today: 85 degrees, partly cloudy, windy, 59% humidity. Sunset's coming at 7:40 p.m. Reminder: The game's on MASN2.

The fabulous Richard Justice sums up the feeling of Opening Day quite well.

While we're waiting for that first pitch from John Lannan, don't forget to take Chico's prediction challenge.

From the Miami Herald, here are some Marlins notes. Read down to the third one, about their bullpen catcher. Amazing. Also, is this the best rotation in the NL East?

Dave's posted a 3 Up, 3 Down: Nats Edition on the Baseball Insider. I gotta find out who made those cool little base/arrow icons for him. Also, the deadline for entering Dave's little contest is 1:10 p.m. today. Which reminds me: I haven't made MY picks yet.

Tim Dierkes has a link to the report by USA Today's Bob Nightengale that 14 teams out of 30 cut payroll. In that story is the link to the paper's salary database, updated for 2009; that's a good bookmark to have.

What else? Former Nat Jamey Carroll is starting the season for the Indians on the DL.

The P-Nats' Media Day workout on Wednesday is also open to the public. Pfitzner Stadium opens at 2:30. The P-Nats open the season Thursday at Lynchburg and their home opener is April 17 against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans.

Other minor league openers: The Harrisburg Senators open Thursday at Reading; the Hagerstown Suns open Thursday at Lake County; Vermont Lake Monsters open April June 19 at the Lowell Spinners and the Gulf Coast Nats ... I can't find a schedule! But I believe they don't play until June.

As for the Syracuse Chiefs, Bud Poliquin of the Post-Standard promises a cold day in Syracuse Thursday for the Chiefs' opener against dread foe Rochester.

By Tracee Hamilton  |  April 6, 2009; 11:45 AM ET
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Next: About The Marlins


Happy Opening Day to you, too, Tracee. Thanks for all the links.

Hope that Jamey Carroll's (sigh) first stint on the MLB DL is short-lived and that he goes on to have a great year.

Thanks for including info on our Minor League teams. BTW, they are giving away replica championship rings to the first 1,000 fans at the P-Nats home opener.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 6, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Tracee - The Lake Monsters and GCL Nationals do not start playing until after the draft in June. It's actually June 19 when Vermont starts.

The DSL Nationals typically get started later in May.

Posted by: Brian_ | April 6, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

If anyone can weasel their way into an extra one of those, I'd be happy to work out some sort of trade.

Which reminds me, I still owe Traveler a Twins pennant. I haven't forgotten - I've just been waiting for the season to resume (the only ones left at the end of last season had Gomez's cheesy mug on them).


Thanks for including info on our Minor League teams. BTW, they are giving away replica championship rings to the first 1,000 fans at the P-Nats home opener.

Posted by: JohninMpls | April 6, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

We may be able to work something out, JiM.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 6, 2009 12:22 PM | Report abuse

I'll be cheering for the Nats today at Dolphin Stadium! Any other NJers going to be there?

Posted by: PNatsFan | April 6, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Happy Opening Day to you too, Tracee!

Posted by: PattyinSJ | April 6, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

How much does a bullpen catcher make?

Posted by: Avar | April 6, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

I'll be a losesome Nats fan quietly cheerin' on the Senators in Trenton the 13th, 14th and 15th. If any NJer happens to be there, just look for the guy with the curly W hat in section 12. Anybody seen an updated Harrisburg roster posted?

Posted by: nats24 | April 6, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

It snowed here yesterday morning, Winter's final attempt to keep the Spring at bay. Nothing but clear skies today, and the sun is glinting off that sail-like ceiling of the Metrodome.

For baseball fans, Opening Day feels like Christmas morning feels for children. The excitement is palpable and filled with the hope and promise of wishes fulfilled. And as interminably long as it takes to arrive, it quickly passes.

Like a child, I dressed with appropriate festivity, wearing my Nats pajamas to bed last night. I awoke this morning with a singular thought in my head, the same thought that will, save for a handful of days, possess my consciousness every morning until October 5th: I hope the Nats win today.

Opening Day is so symbolic because it reminds us that every day with baseball can be this hopeful. As long as there is a game, there's a chance to win. As long as there's a game today, there is no yesterday.

Still, we'll get caught up in the horse race soon enough, which is what makes today so special. Today is the only day this year we truly have nothing but today's game on our minds.

And I hope the Nats win today.

Happy Opening Day!

Posted by: JohninMpls | April 6, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

You have Nats jammies. And you're bold enough to tell everyone.

I think I love you too, JohninMpls. ;)

Posted by: NatsNut | April 6, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse


Nicely done. I'm shocked though, snow in Minneapolis.

It takes some onions to admit sleeping in Nats jammies. I will give you some respect for that.

Posted by: Section505203 | April 6, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

I second NatsNut, JiM. That was a lovely post.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 6, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Nats jammies, no big deal. Nats lingerie, now that would be something. "The Curly W goes in the front, big guy."

Posted by: BobLHead | April 6, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Laughing here, BobL.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 6, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of bullpen catchers, the baseball coach of St. Albans School (in DC) was the bullpen catcher for the Red Sox for several years. He had played for Harvard's baseball team.

Posted by: Natsgal | April 6, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Thanks JiM and BobL, I'll be smiling all afternoon - hopefully after the game too!

Thanks Tracee for the links. Happy happy opening day.


Posted by: utec | April 6, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

You all are a hoot. If it's snowing, you definitely need your Nats jammies. It's great to read all these wonderful things about opening day.
I don't know if this has been mentioned, but I think the Nats did a fine job in coming up with their high school initiative (details on the Web site). This is exactly the sort of thing the team should do, and it meant that the folks at the exhibition game (where it was announced) were more reflective of the city than is normally the case. In other words, the crowd had more African American representation than has been the case in the past--a great development.

Posted by: Section109 | April 6, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

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