Dan's Dugout: First Week Was Full of Surprises • Latino Sports

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Dan’s Dugout: First Week Was Full of Surprises

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Joaquin Andujar won’t make the Hall of Fame but he might qualify for Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations.

Asked to describe baseball in one word, he said, “Youneverknow.”

That description certainly fits the first week of the 2017 season.

It had more surprises than Kim Jong Un.

Check it out:

• The Philadelphia Phillies, generally picked last in the National League East, scored a club-record 12 runs in the first inning against the Washington Nationals, the consensus choice to win the division
• Making his first start for Washington, Jeremy Guthrie yielded nine hits, four walks, and ten earned runs in two-thirds of an inning – on his birthday
• Earlier in the week, San Francisco pitching stud Madison Bumgarner became the first pitcher in

Madison Bumgarner is the first pitcher to homer twice on Opening Day

Madison Bumgarner is the first pitcher to homer twice on Opening Day

baseball history to bang two home runs on Opening Day
• Three-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw, who usually channels Sandy Koufax, threw back-to-back gopher balls in his second start
• Mike Trout, the always-heavenly Angel, came up with a clutch home run to beat the Mariners after receiving the American League MVP trophy before the game
• Proving spring training means squat, Yankee first baseman Greg Bird started the season 1-for-16 after tearing the cover off the ball in the Grapefruit League
• The Yankees won 24 spring training games but dropped four of their first five after the bell rang for the regular season
• The Atlanta Braves, whose Freddie Freeman is the best first baseman in the National League, signed an over-the-hill first baseman nobody wanted (Ryan Howard)
• Even Melvin Upton, Jr. got another chance, joining the San Francisco Giants after earning his release from the Toronto Blue Jays
• Nobody signed ex-Mets Kelly Johnson or Jeff Francoeur, valuable utilitymen whose refusal to accept minor-league contracts might have ended their careers
• None of the first three Mets starters yielded a run but the back end of their rotation was hammered by the meek Miami Marlins, even with Martin Prado idled by a hamstring pull

Kendall Graveman tested Texas hitters Saturday night

Kendall Graveman tested Texas hitters Saturday

• Anonymous Oakland righthander Kendall Graveman held the powerful Texas Rangers hitless for six innings
• Denver native Kyle Freeland, an even more anonymous pitcher, won his major-league debut for the Colorado Rockies, his hometown team
• With fortune finally falling in their direction, the Chicago Cubs won a game when Gold Glove catcher Yadier Molina of the Cardinals couldn’t find the ball – because it got wedged into his chest protector
• This columnist learned that his latest book, The New Baseball Bible, went into its second printing just two weeks after its original publication date
• As Woody Woodpecker might say, “That’s all, folks!”

About Dan Schlossberg

Former AP sportswriter Dan Schlossberg of Fair Lawn, NJ has produced 35 baseball books, including autobiographies of Ron Blomberg, Al Clark, and Milo Hamilton. Also a broadcaster, he is the host and executive producer of Braves Banter and Travel Itch Radio and a contributor to Sirius XM.

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