The 2021 MLB opening day was back! It was not a completely normal opening day yet, but absolutely a step in the right direction as some fans were allowed to be there! In classic MLB opening day fashion, there were, of course, some great moments, weird moments, and bad moments (depending on who you cheer for). Here is a list of some of the top five things from opening day 2021( in no specific order).
Cody Bellinger robbed of his home run:
One of the weirdest rules in baseball came into play Thursday on opening day, in the third inning when Cody Bellinger would theoretically hit a home run. However, it would be changed to be ruled as an RBI single because he would run past Justin Turner, who started the play at first base. According to the MLB rule, if the runner passes the baserunner, he is ruled out. Justin Turner was able to score the run, but Bellinger, was ruled out, and the second baseman would receive a putout.
“Rule 5.09(b)(9) Comment: A runner may be deemed to have passed a preceding (i.e., lead) runner based on his actions or the actions of a preceding runner.
PLAY—Runners on second base and third base with one out. The runner from third base (i.e., the lead runner) makes an advance toward home and is caught in a rundown between third base and home plate. Believing the lead runner will be tagged out, the runner at second base (i.e., the trailing runner) advances to third base. Before being tagged, the lead runner runs back to and beyond third base toward left field. At this time, the trailing runner has passed the lead runner as a result of the lead runner’s actions. As a result, the trailing runner is out, and third base is unoccupied. The lead runner is entitled to third base if he returns to touch it before he is out, see Rule 5.06(a)(1) unless he is declared out for abandoning the bases.”
One of the craziest moments you'll see at a baseball game
Cody Bellinger hits a two-run home run, but with Justin Turner running back to first base and Bellinger passing him, it officially becomes a single instead and Bellinger is out pic.twitter.com/dzB9yIHghZ
— Blake Harris (@BlakeHarrisTBLA) April 1, 2021
Four Games hit extra innings:
Opening day was not short of close games that would come down to the final pitch as four of the 12 games for 33% went into extra innings. Whether you are for the new extra-inning rules where a runner starts the inning on second base or if you are against it, the games were nothing short of fantastic. Blue Jays upended the division favorites Yankees 3-2 in 10 innings. Phillies topped the Braves in 10 innings 3-2, Brewers walked off on the Twins 6-5 in 10 innings and finally the best for last, the Mariners scored six runs in the 8th inning to take a one-run lead for the Giants to tie the game in the ninth before Seattle would walk off in the 10th innings in one of the most exciting games of opening day 2021.
Best Game or Worst Game:
Depending on the type of fan you are, the matchup between the Texas Rangers and the Kansas City Royals was your favorite or least favorite game. Both starting pitchers could not see the third inning as Rangers starter Kyle Gibson last 0.1IP and the Royals pitcher Brad Keller finished with 1.1IP. Combined, they gave up 11ER in that 1.2IP of combined work. The Rangers opened with five just to allow the Royals to match with five in the first. Royals would win the game 14-10, scoring at least two runs in four of their eight innings of at-bats.
Fans Have not Forgotten:
Those worried that the Astros got lucky to avoid the “booing” from fans after nobody was allowed at games in the 2020 season until the playoffs. However, the Oakland faithful allowed into the stadium made sure to make it known that the Astros cheating scandal had not been forgotten about. The Astros were not fazed by it at all; however, winning the game still 8-1 as they try to prove their worth to MLB fans once again.
“Number 2, Alex Bregman.”
— The Baseball Newsletter (@bbletter) April 2, 2021
The bad news two games were postponed:
Yes, this has to be included to keep it on the radar. The first game postponed was the Baltimore Orioles versus Boston Red Sox as the opening game could not be played due to weather conditions in Boston. The game is now scheduled for Friday as both teams will play their first game. The Washington Nationals and the New York Mets game had to be postponed due to COVID-19 testing. There are now four players and a staff member in quarantine for the Washington Nationals.
Everyone is questioning if the rumors about the ball changing will dramatically affect the game. Only one day in, and a comparison to the 2019 opening day, were 48 home runs hit, which was an opening day record. On the opening day of 2021, the total home runs hit was 29. It is too early to talk about a season statistic, but this is an interesting comparison, for opening day to opening day was a difference of 19 home runs.
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