We suspect a big reason the advent of a new baseball season remains so captivating goes beyond the usual ‘optimism-with-your-team’ thing, and hits us all in a place a bit more elemental. In their infinite wisdom, the baseball powers-that-be decreed that the new MLB season would commence very nearly exactly with the beginning of spring. Even if you don’t know a squeeze play from a tube of toothpaste, you can appreciate the blooming of flowers, the softening in the air and the sun on your face. Everyone is a little giddy to begin with, then the boys of summer come along and the world seems rife with possibilities again.
In these parts, it helps that the Phillies are once again poised to be one of the best teams in the majors, with a monster three-man pitching rotation that remains the class of the league. Herewith, a weekend guide to enjoy both the cracking of the bats, and the glorious return of sunshine and chlorophyll.
Thursday, April 5
Phillies: The Phightin’s won’t make their home debut until Monday, against the new-look Marlins, but they open the 2012 season this afternoon in Pittsburgh, to tangle with the perpetually downtrodden Pirates. Phillies’ uber-ace Roy Halladay will pitch against the Bucs’ Erik Bedard, which would seem to be a bit of a mismatch. Remember, please, Mr. Halladay is the owner of numerous Cy Youngs, and gave Phillies fans one of the more remarkable and memorable post-season moments just a couple of years ago.
Friday, April 6:
Springtime: Sure, First Fridays in Old City are year round, but the monthly art gallery celebration doesn’t really get rolling until the weather turns warm. Enjoy the art, hear the impromptu music on the streets, and drink your fill of inexpensive wine in small plastic cups.
Saturday, April 7:
Phillies: In case you didn’t realize it, the Phillies have been blessed with a starting rotation that is the envy of the big leagues. Tonight, the Phils trot out Mr. Cliff Lee (who, two years ago, turned down the Yankees in order to pitch with us again, we’d just like to remind you gleefully). What better way to catch the game than watching on the giant outdoor video board at the Piazza at Schmidt’s (1050 North Hancock), with a crowd of fellow believers?
Sunday, April 8:
Springtime: Easter is many things to many people, but at some point, bunnies are usually involved. At the Easter Promenade in Headhouse Square begins with a doggie parade (sponsored by PAWS), and culminates in a festival of music, food, a costume contest, and free pairs of bunny ears for all!
- Phillies Official Site
- Philadelphia First Friday
- The Piazza at Schmidt’s
- Easter Dog Parade on Fox Philadelphia