Braves route Phillies, but lose massive piece to IL

dkb230411030 cin vs atl

For much of Friday afternoon, it felt a lot like last year’s NLDS between the Braves and Phillies.

In front of a raucous Philadelphia crowd on Opening Day, Spencer Strider vs. Zack Wheeler came as advertised. Both were dealing to a scoreless 0-0 tie through four innings, but that all changed in the fifth, when the Phillies finally got through to Spencer Strider on a two-run homer off the bat of Brandon Marsh.

Up until that point, Strider was cruising, striking out seven over four innings, but a lengthy fifth inning forced him to exit the game earlier than he would have liked. Wheeler, on the other hand, was brilliant, reminding everyone that while Strider may be the one with all of the hype coming into the season, he won’t just be handed the NL Cy Young award. The Phillies ace would exit the game after six scoreless innings with five strikeouts.

That would be the last positive memory of Opening Day for the Philly faithful, however. The Braves would get to the vaunted Phillies bullpen in the seventh on a two-run double off the bat of Adam Duvall, who entered the game as a pinch-hitter for Jarred Kelenic. The Braves would then tack on seven runs in the eighth, capped off by a three-run double from Matt Olson, who finished the game with three doubles.

It was a nice way to bounce back from the horrors of the last two postseasons for the Braves, particularly at Citizens Bank Park, but it wasn’t all good on Opening Day.

In the seventh inning, All-Star catcher Sean Murphy grabbed his side after fouling a pitch into the net. Trainers would immediately greet him at the plate, and it didn’t take long for Brian Snitker to pull him from the game. Following the win, it was announced Sean Murphy will head to the Injured List.

That’s a tough way to end what was a fantastic performance by the Braves, particularly from the lineup and the bullpen.

Obliques are tricky injuries that you don’t want to mess with. Judging by how quickly the Braves made the call after the game, I imagine this will be a pretty lengthy IL stint, one that will last at least a month. The Braves have a more than competent backup catcher in Travis d’Arnaud, and a roster that can pick up the slack in Murphy’s absence. There is absolutely no reason to take any chances this early in the season until he’s 100% healthy.

Photo: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire


Scroll to Top
%d bloggers like this: