Perhaps Obama's arrant first pitch was a sign of bad things to come. Despite pouncing to an early 1-0 lead, Washington fell behind after a five run fourth inning that saw Ryan Howard hit a two run homer, and even Roy Halladay get an RBI single. The Phil's would add on two more in the sixth and four more in the seventh to come out on top 11-1.
Picking up where he left off: Nyjer Morgan picked up where he left off when he went down to injury last summer, going 2-4 on the afternoon with a stolen base and the Nationals only run. Morgan got on base in the first with an infield single, and hit a double later in the game off of Bastardo.
Opening day, a national Halladay: Roy Halladay did not disappoint Phillies fans in his first outing. The new ace allowed only six hits in seven innings, while striking out nine and only walking two. At times Halladay made Nationals batters look silly, forcing backawards K's and weak hit pop-ups.
Outside of Batista, bullpen shines: Jesse English made his first career major league appearance in the top of the fourth with the bases loaded and Ryan Howard at the plate. He forced the lefty to ground out to second to end the inning. English went on to retire the next three batters in order. Sean Burnett and Brian Bruney each pitched a scoreless inning in the eighth and ninth innings respectively.
The future hall-of-famer earns his keep: Ivan Rodriguez, making his Nationals debut, shut up skeptics who said he no longer had the ability to get it done at the plate, at least for now. The 38-year-old catcher went 3-4 on the night with a pair of doubles against one of the better pitchers in baseball. Rodriguez also made an excellent defensive play in the third firing a rifle of a throw to second base to break up Roy Halladay's sacrifice attempt.
(WPA Charts from Fangraphs.com, the BEST stat site on the net)