Opening Day in Major League Baseball brings with it optimism and excitement for all 30 clubs around the league, but not all Opening Day matchups are created equal.
While some like the Yankees opened up with teams expected to be bottom-dwellers like the Orioles, others faced off with their chief competition for a divisional crown. That was the case in Philadelphia, as the Phillies hosted the Braves with an opportunity to get an early leg up on their rivals in the marathon that is the baseball season.
If that wasn’t enough, it also was Bryce Harper’s first game as a member of the Phillies after inking a gigantic contract to make the short trip from D.C. to Philly earlier this offseason. Harper knows how to play to the fans and has spent the last month-plus making sure Philly fans know he’s all in, and for his debut he broke out a fantastic pair of Phillie Phanatic cleats from Under Armour.
The Phanatic is among the best, most beloved mascots in all of sports, so it’s a nice touch from Bryce to have Under Armour make him some Phanatic cleats. The execution is tremendous and while his first at-bat didn’t yield a hit, the Phillies did take an early 1-0 lead on the Braves thanks to a home run in the first at-bat of their other big addition this summer, as Andrew McCutchen took Julio Teheran yard to start the bottom of the first.