ATLANTA They ran out onto Turner Field amid fireworks and confetti and the sounds of a marching band that stood in center field raining down, while the sellout crowd of 51,456 chanted and Tomahawk Chopped.
It was the pomp and circumstance of Opening Day that greeted the Braves, punctuated by appearances by greats Dale Murphy and Phil Niekro, while Chipper Jones, in his first year of retirement, threw out the first pitch.
But as Tim Hudson fired a ball to Phillies outfielder Ben Revere at 7:14 p.m., the buildup was over and the realities of the season started to take shape. And no reality is more important than this: Atlanta is going to score, and in bunches.
"We can do that," manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "It's nice to see."
Freddie Freeman homered in the first inning as part of his three-hit, three-RBI night, Dan Uggla delivered a HR in the second and Justin Upton did so in the fifth as the Braves beat the Phillies 8-5.
Thats just something thats just beginning, Freeman said. ...