Here is the starting nine Charlie Manuel is trotting out this afternoon:
1. Shane Victorino, CF
2. Placido Polanco, 3B
3. Jimmy Rollins, SS
4. Ryan Howard, 1B
5. Ben Francisco, RF
6. Raul Ibanez, LF
7. Carlos Ruiz, C
8. Michael Martinez, 2B
A little surprising John Mayberry Jr. hasn't been rewarded for his hot start (4-for-5 in pinch hits) with a spot start, but Charlie Manuel isn't going to plus him in at left field in favor of the left-handed hitting Ibanez and Ben Francisco continues to wield a hot bat.
This will be Hamels' first start since getting booed off the mound at Citizens Bank Park Tuesday night. That seemed to produce a lot of chatter among Phillies fans and radio talk show hosts since, so I spoke to Hamels about it Saturday.
His reaction: booing happens. He's not bothered by it, and he also boos. Read all about Cole Hamels' take on booing here.
Saturday at Turner Field produced a pretty entertaining game, one that I thought was determined in two important at-bats a half-inning apart. Carlos Ruiz and Roy Oswalt both succeeded in leading the Phils to victory.
On the major league baseball scene, obviously Manny Ramirez's retirement got a lot of pub, considering the way it happened. (He decided to quit the game rather than serve a 100-game suspension for failing another drug test for using performance-enhacing drugs).
But to me, the biggest story was what happened at Dodger Stadium on Opening Day: a San Francisco Giants fan named Brian Stow was put into a coma and showing signs of brain damage after being beaten by Dodgers fans outside the stadium.
Here is a chilling quote from the story: "During the game, my wife received a text message from him ... He basically said he was scared inside the stadium," John Stow said, adding that his cousin did not usually make such comments lightly."
Editorializing: I'm more than OK with giving fans of the opposing team a little grief during a game. But there are certainly lines you shouldn't cross, including using language not appropriate for the many young ears that attend baseball games.
But even worse is when the arguments turn physical. These are baseball games, people. It's supposed to be fun, not life-threatening.
On a broader scale, this same thought process should spill over to the vast, uncontrolled world of social media. It's great to debate or argue back and forth with people. But practice a little civility. It's not that difficult to be nice to people.