At 4:10 PM in Arizona, the 2012 MLB season will commence for the Arizona Diamondbacks. Opening Day will happen in front of a sold-out crowd at Chase Field against the San Francisco Giants. The two teams are expected to contend for the NL West crown in 2012.
Two-time Cy Young award winner Tim Lincecum will battle Arizona ace Ian Kennedy. If both are in top form, it could be a great matchup.
For the Diamondbacks, their Opening Day lineup has a couple of surprises.
To start off, Chris Young will bat second. He did not do so the entire spring. He has, though batted second 67 times. Aaron Hill, who has batted second almost the entire spring and also most of the time he was in Arizona last season, is batting eighth.
Also, while it is not necessarily a surprise, Jason Kubel gets the start in left field instead of Gerardo Parra. It will be intriguing to see how manager Kirk Gibson uses the two players.
Willie Bloomquist will start at shortstop and lead off. He will not play every game there, though. Gibson said Bloomquist and John McDonald would "split up like they did last year." He has not yet decided how the opening series would go at the position.
the Diamondbacks otherwise look more or less the same; however, the Giants look different and might play differently. One thing that Gibson anticipates is more running from the Giants.
"Their personnel is much quicker than it has been and I know that their manager likes to do that," said Gibson pregame.
The comment was made that Tim Lincecum might not throw as many sliders against the D-backs. "We'll see what happens in the game," Gibson responded. "He has tendencies of what he does like all pitcher do. We'll see if that is a fact. we know in the past he's thrown it in certain situations."
Here are the starting lineups:
- Angel Pagan, CF
- Melky Cabrera, RF
- Pablo Sandoval, 3B
- Buster Posey, C
- Aubrey Huff, LF
- Brandon Belt, 1B
- Ryan Theriot, 2B
- Brandon Crawford, SS
- Tim Lincecum, P
- Willie Bloomquist, SS
- Chris Young, CF
- Justin Upton, RF
- Miguel Montero, C
- Paul Goldschmidt, 1B
- Jason Kubel, LF
- Ryan Roberts, 3B
- Aaron Hill, 2B
- Ian Kennedy, P
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