Thursday, March 31, 2011

Teixeira Blasts Verlander, Tigers; Walk-off Homer by Hernandez Lifts Reds

 Players of the Day for Opening Day, Thursday, March 31, 2011

American League

Mark Teixeira
For a player who usually starts out slowly, Mark Teixeira's third inning, three-run home run off Detroit's Justin Verlander was an unusually good omen and set the stage for an opening day home win for the NY Yankees.

Teixeira struggled through the first few months of 2010 before catching fire and finishing with 33 bombs and 108 RBI last year. The homer was his only hit of the day, but it put the Yanks up 3-1 before the Tigers came back to it it with single runs in the 4th and 5th innings.

New York countered with two runs in the 7th and another in the 8th for the 6-3 final score.

National League

The Cincinnati Reds opened their 2011 campaign with a bang, courtesy of a bottom-of-the-ninth, three-run, walk-off home run by Ramon Hernandez.

Ramon Hernandez
Completing a comeback from a 6-2, 7th inning deficit, Hernandez completed the decimation of Milwaukee closer John Axford, who had already allowed a run in the inning. On top of Joey Votto's solo blast in the 7th, the Reds got just what they needed in their final at bat for the 7-6 opening day win.

Hernandez had earlier collected three singles off various Milwaukee hurlers, and got the big hit when it counted, going 4-for-5 with three RBI and the game winner.

Last season, when the Reds won the NL Central division, they had 45 comeback wins. Looks like they're ready to terrorize opposing bullpens again this year.

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