ATLANTA — Opening Day has finally arrived in Atlanta, with perfect weather and the Philadelphia Phillies in tow.
After an action-packed offseason that saw blockbuster trades and big-time performances from top Braves prospects, baseball has returned to the Peach State as Atlanta unveils its new-look for the first time in front of the home crowd. Expect a playoff-type atmosphere for the occasion, too.
Taking on the explosive lineup — one that scored 5.22 runs per game in the Grapefruit League — will be Phillies’ ace Cole Hamels, who is a career 12-7 with a 3.58 ERA against the Braves. Veteran Tim Hudson takes the mound for the Braves. All of this is discussed (in hushed tones, due to press box etiquette) by the Chopcast team of Zach Dillard, Jay Clemons and Cory McCartney live from Turner Field. Here are some of the highlights of an extremely brief Chopcast:
— After battling Atlanta’s Opening Day, what are our writers most looking forward to from the Braves-Phillies opener?
— Can Andrelton Simmons live up to his preseason hype right off the bat?
— Is Opening day important in setting the tone or is it just one of 162 games?
— Tim Hudson, perhaps fittingly, kicks off his contract year against one of the team’s division rivals. What to expect from the savvy vet in his first start of 2013?