I had so much to say today. Thoughts of what I would write for my opening day post had swirled in my head for months. I could hardly contain my excitement. I had to constantly remind myself that the season is long and I'd hate to burn out by May.
Last year, I was driving to Milwaukee on a Friday night in early April (for the next day's game). We were listening to the Brewers-Cardinals game on the radio. The Brewers led 4-3 going into the top of the ninth. Hoffman came in to Hells Bells--and gave up a two-run home run to Nick Stavinoha. While disappointing, it hardly seemed memorable at the time. It dropped Milwaukee to 2-2. Losing sucked but it was early in the season. (Insert it's a marathon, not a sprint metaphor here.) And then Hoffman blew another save on Sunday.
What I know now, that I didn't know then, is that things would only get worse for Hoffman. At one point, Carlos Villanueva was handed the ball as the team's closer. A team doesn't post a 77-85 record without any number of things going wrong, but blowing a ninth inning lead to a division rival is NEVER a good sign.
You'll have to forgive me if I'm a little rattled, then, after what happened today in Milwaukee's season opener. Yep, the Brewers blew a ninth inning lead to a division rival. Milwaukee built a 6-3 lead against the Reds behind home runs from Rickie Weeks, Carlos Gomez and Ryan Braun. And then John Axford came in to pitch the ninth and gave up four runs, including a walk-off, three-run homer to Ramon "Nick Stavinoha" Hernandez.
I may be a little jaded but I'm not worried yet. Really I'm not. I refuse to be one of those people that pretends that she saw a sub-par season coming and prepares for the worst. I have high expectations and, if all else fails, I have a lot of beer.
Reds 7, Brewers 6
Game played 3-31-11