Apr 1, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman (5) hits a home run against Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Cole Hamels (35) during the first inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Utley Impresses, But Phils Fall to Braves 7-5 in Opener

Chase Utley is healthy, and if tonight was any indication(3-5, 1 Homerun, 3 RBI’s), primed to have a big season. That was about the only positive to take out of the Phillies 7-5 loss on Opening Day.

Cole Hamels was less than stellar allowing five runs in just five innings. I know that this was just one start, but the bottom line is that Cole Hamels is paid to be an ace, and the Phillies need him to step his performance against Atlanta up in 2013, because the Phillies need to beat the Braves head-to-head if they want to win the division.

As for the bullpen, Chad Durbin gave up 2 earned runs in 0.0 innings, but the Jeremy Horst and Phillippe Amount both looked solid in their time in the game. Both figure to play roles as middle relievers in 2013.

Ben Revere, John Mayberry, Dom Brown, and Erik Kratz all had one hit, as the Phils totalled 10 hits. Unfortunately the Braves turned three of their hits into homeruns(Justin Upton, Dan Uggla, and Freddie Freeman), and that ended up being the difference in tonights game.

Justin Upton high fives his brother B.J. after hitting his first homerun in a Braves uniform. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The final thought to walk away from the opener is that the Braves look good. They have a ridiculous amount of pop in their lineup, and once Johnny Venters comes back, this bullpen is probably the most dominant in the game. So if the Phillies are going to beat the Braves this year, it will likely be because they outhit the Braves early on, rather than waiting for late comeback attempts like tonight.

Tags: Braves Opening Day Chase Utley Opening Day Freddie Freeman Opening Day Phillies Lose Opening Day Phillies Vs Braves Highlights

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