PHILADELPHIA -- The two best teams in the National League met in Game 1 of the series that could well decide the NL East. A clash of the titans it wasn’t.
The Phillies’ starting pitcher: Cole Hamels, most valuable player of the 2008 World Series.
The Braves’ starting pitcher: Brandon Beachy, a rookie who wasn’t on the team’s 40-man roster as of Sunday.
The Phillies set their rotation for this series so as to give each of their Big Three — Hamels and the two Roys, Halladay and Oswalt — a turn. The Braves didn’t know who’d start Game 1 until 3 p.m. Monday, when it was decided Jair Jurrjens’ knee was too sore. Said Beachy, speaking late Monday after two days of motion and uncertainty: “I’m here right now; two days ago I was down in Orlando [in the instructional league].”
The wonder was that it was even close, but this Braves’ season has been a series of wonders. They took a early lead and wasted a