Happy opening night. It will be nice to see more competitive tension in the games, though spring training, with its races for roster spots and the fifth spot in the starting rotation, did not lack intensity. When people say that the games will finally start to matter tonight, I think: haven’t they mattered to Chan Ho Park, J.A. Happ, Miguel Cairo, Marcus Giles and many others already? Now, though, they will matter in the standings.
Which leads to Baseball Prospectus’s PECOTA projections, which have the Phillies narrowly missing the playoffs. For those unfamiliar with the system, see this profile I wrote about its mathmaster Nate Silver last year (you may remember him for projecting Obama’s win over McCain with frightening precision).
Also, we begin the season-long competition for best blog response of the week. As Inquirer readers know, I’ll be running one piece of intelligent analysis with my Sunday Phillies column each week. So get yourselves in regular-season shape. Commentors who sign their first and last names to opinions will be given preference, but the system is not absolute. If FOOFOOFAAFAA87 offers something brilliant, well, he/she may find their comment in the paper. But wouldn’t you rather see your name in print?