Happy Opening Day

At Saturday's exhibition game on Phanavision's "Ask the Phillies" segment, the Phillies answered the question "What is the best day of the year?" Besides Larry Anderson's response of Tuesday, many of the Phillies and broadcasters replied "Opening Day." I'm going to have to agree with them. Opening Day should be an official holiday.

Today is the day the Phillies start defending.

Brett Myers takes the mound against Derek Lowe of the Atlanta Braves, on national television.

Thanks to Phightin' Phils Phorum, here is the schedule building up to the first pitch.

5:05 PM - All gates open

5:28-6:28 PM - Phillies batting practice

6:28 - 7:18 PM - Braves batting practice

7:23 PM - Cardinal O'Hara High School marching band will perform as the 2009 Phillies enter the ballpark, greeted by Mayor Nutter and Charlie Manuel.

7:38 PM - America the Beautiful will be sung by the Philadelphia Boys Choir and Men's Chorale, directed by Jeffrey R. Smith, as members of the Pennsylvania Army and Air National Guard unfurl the American Flag. State Flags will be carried onto the field by the Philadelphia Police and Fire Department personnel.

7:42 PM - Introductions start

7:53 PM - National Anthem: Will be performed by Katie Stam, Miss America 2009.

7:56 PM - U.S. Army 82nd Airborne Parachute team will parachute onto the field (weather permitting), bringing the first balls.

8:00 PM - NASA astronaut Chris Ferguson, who wore a Phillies jersey in space, will present the jersey to Charlie Manuel.

8:01 PM - Ceremonial First Pitch: Will be thrown by former Phillies General Manager Pat Gillick and Ben Lo, representing Modell's Sporting Goods.

(I'm pretty sure there was a kid named Ben Lo who went/still goes to my school...)

8:09 PM - Play Ball!

And as Macho Row puts it, here is how the game will be after the first pitch.

8:11 PM - Brett Myers records season's first strike out

8:22 PM - Ryan Howard hits first of 84 home runs this season

10:53 PM - Brad Lidge records first save of the season


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