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Opening Day: The Best Day of the Year

By Alex Patterson

Today is Opening Day, an unofficial baseball holiday. Never before has an Opening Day had this type of feel to it if you are a Colorado Rockies fan, and let’s face it, if you’re reading this article, you probably are. This year, there is a sense of purpose and of unfinished business, unlike the 2008 opener. This group is young and up-and-coming with both the pitching staff and the everyday lineup, unlike in 1996. And this Opening has something else that comes along with it, huge expectations.

One of the reasons that Opening Day is so special is because anything is possible. Right now, there is no reason to think that the Rockies can’t be in the World Series 6 ½ months from now. On the other hand, with the terribly wrong circumstances, this team could be on a beach somewhere at this same time. Any and every team has the same mind set, and every fan base can think about October right now. Opening Day is a cause for memories galore as well, and here are some of the better Opening Day memories in Rockies memories.

1993: The Rockies first game, and first Major League Baseball game played at Mile High Stadium (the stadium was originally built as a minor league stadium for the Denver Bears and was originally called Bears Stadium before the Broncos moved in in 1960). Eric Young, the first ever Rockies batter led off the game with a home run to left field, setting the stage for the Blake Street Bombers of the mid to late 1990’s.

1995: The first game ever played at Coors Field after the strike-shortened 1994 season and the first game played in a strike-shortened 1995 season. This game wasn’t played until April 26th, and was the first game of the season for both teams, the Rockies and the Mets. The Rockies won in 14 innings 11-9.

2001: Mike Hampton made his much-anticipated debut as a Rockie and didn’t disappoint. Outdueling his counter-part in former-Rockie Darryle Kile, Hampton pitched 8 1/3 scoreless innings. Todd and Larry Walker both homered to lead the offense in a 8-0 win over the St. Louis Cardinals.

2005: Clint Barmes hit a game winning home run to cap a 4-run 9th-inning rally by the Rockies over the San Diego Padres in a 12-10 win. Barmes would have one of the best April’s ever for a rookie before getting hurt, and it all got started on Opening Day. The best part of it all, the 4-run rally was cooked up against Trevor Hoffman, one of the best closers ever.

Opening day has had its moments in the past for the Rockies. Today, with a 5-3 win over the Brewers was no different. The true Opening Day is the home opener on Friday, and a full house is expected. The fans truly believe the hype this time around.

1 comment:

  1. Jimenez had some real nice stuff going today, we got a little lucky with some bad baseball by the Brewers but a great way to start off the season. Hopefully we can win a series on the road to start the year which would be a great start versus a solid team.