Reds at Phillies: Eyewitness Report

Hey guys, so here's what I saw in Clearwater today:

  • First and foremost, Bright House Field is leaps and bounds better than Ed Smith stadium in every concievable way.  Better facility, more seating, more food/beer selections, better scoreboard, lawn seating in the outfield, and a freaking tiki bar in LF.  It's a shame the Reds aren't going to be in Sarasota after this year, but the fact that they're moving into a new facility is going to go a long way.
  • I had a cheesesteak, fries, and a huge local micro-brew beer for $16.25.  Not only is the beer selection exponentially higher than at Ed Smith, they're cheaper and bigger too.
  • Jacque Jones made the play of the day in CF to rob a hit.
  • Yonder, Hanigan, and Ward all went yard for the Reds, as well as Valaika's timely grand slam.  All of them were pretty much no doubters, especially Hanigan's.
  • Keppinger is a terrible defensive shortstop.  There were no less than two plays that any other SS on the team would have gotten to, and Kepp didn't make the plays.  A throwing error topped off his day, as well as mucking up throws in fielding ground balls between innings that won't be counted in the score book.  He's flat out not the guy who should be there Opening Day.
  • On the other hand, Valaika looked pretty decent there.  Not major league starter decent, but he looked better than Kepp.
  • Arroyo looked just ok.  Not spectacular, but not terrible either.
  • Dickerson created some much needed HAVOC.  Looked much better on the bases today than yesterday when he got thrown out.
  • Lincoln looked like he always does, and Jukich was hard to picture without that soul-sucking glare he gives off in his GameDay picture.  He's probably the skinniest guy to pitch today.
  • Roenicke throws hard.  D-Ray pitched really well, and got a lot of disbelief from the crowd wondering how this little tiny guy was striking out Phillies hitters like he was.  He made Raul Ibanez look like a rookie.
  • I'm not sure why, but to me Chris Kroski looks like a decent catcher.  He seemed like he handled the pitchers well and could swing the bat too.  Maybe he could catch on in the minors somewhere.
  • Former Red Justin Lehr got lit up against his old team.  He's the guy who left Louisville last year to pitch in Korea.
  • The most popular Phillie, by a long shot, was Chris Coste.  His ovation was twice as loud as anyone else, even Ryan Howard's.  Jay Bruce got the best one for any of the Reds
  • Phillies fans knew their shit, and weren't obnoxious at all in that setting.  They're ok in my book.

Pics after the jump...




Ben Jukich (I think...) walking around before the game







Hanigan before shot.




Hanigan after shot.



Hova looking pretty damn majestic in the batter's box.



BK approved outfield candidate Jonny Gomes looking tough.




Bronson throwing a pitch, probably with other things on his mind.



Stubbs and Frazier warming up before going in.  They're the future, folks.






Roenicke throwing hard.



Danny Ray warming up.



The front of the stadium as we were leaving.  Did I mention it's better than Ed Smith Stadium?

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