MLB Opening Day! It's something all of us (well, those of use buried in snow all winter) look forward to every spring, because not only is baseball back, but also spring is finally here. All of the debate and analysis on teams has already begun and it was no different in our chat rooms. We had our experts give their thoughts on the first few games of the season. Play ball! For everything else from this week, check out chat archive.
I never really though Jeff Samardzija was going to turn into anything worth writing home about, but between last season and [Monday], I'm ready to shut my stupid mouth. The guy works his butt off and gets better and better. Is he turning into a true ace?
Michael Wilbon, PTI co-host
Wasn't that a gem Jeff threw? He was in TOTAL command. Now granted, it was the Pirates he shut out. And I never saw him as the ace of a staff either, but Opening Day, which is always completely overrated as an indicator of what's going to happen the rest of the year, he was so impressive. Of course Carlos Marmol was his usual self, meaning a high school pithcer has better control. I literally can't stand to see Marmol walk in from the bullpen. Okay, I won't go off on that rant, but I'm glad Sveum had Marmol on a short leash and got him out of there. Would have been a total shame to waste such a well-pitched game. Full transcript
Lincecum walked 7, took 91 pitches to get through 5 innings, and his average fastball velocity was 90 MPN. Early season aside, he has been rough now for over a year. How long before the Giants move him full time to the bullpen?
Keith Law, MLB Insider
I think he gets at least two months. They don't have an ideal replacement in the wings, and he's so established as a starter there ... maybe that's too long, now that I say it, but I don't expect them to move him to the pen as a knee-jerk reaction to a bad 2-3 starts. Full transcript
Gene Mullett (Columbus, OH)
What are Adrian Beltre's chances of being an HoFer? Would you vote for him?
David Schoenfield, SweetSpot blogger
I wrote about this last year. Pretty good, I think. His defense reputation is starting to build into "one of the best ever" and his counting stats -- hits, home runs, RBIs -- are going to be very high. Has a shot at 3,000 hits since he come up so young, already over 1200 RBIs. He'll have a pretty good case if he has 3-4 more good years. Full transcript