Welcome one and welcome all to our third MLB season at The Outside Corner! If you joined us over the offseason and have only seen the Dugout Digest as a link dump, things are a bit different during the regular season. The DD will serve as a nightly recap of the previous day's games, and also as a look ahead to the most compelling matchups in the current day's games. But before we get into the recap of last night, we've got some announcements to take care of...
First off, we'd like to welcome Ian Casselberry to the staff of TOC. Ian has a wealth of experience writing for a variety of sites across the web, including Yahoo!'s Big League Stew, SB Nation Detroit, and Bleacher Report, and he'll be churning out a couple of feature columns per week here at TOC. We're extremely excited to have Ian on the good ship TOC, and look forward to everyone reading his work going forward.
Secondly, we're going to be starting a newsletter at TOC in the vein of that of our sister site on the Bloguin network, Awful Announcing. Signups for the newsletter are open right now, and the first edition will likely end up going out sometime next week. Now, this newsletter isn't going to just be a link dump for The Outside Corner, but instead a link dump for a variety of baseball sites, collecting a selection of must-read columns, in-depth analysis, and must-watch videos once or twice a week. We're going to start up the newsletter on a one day per week basis and eventually expand it to two (and possibly three) days a week.
As an extra bonus to entice you to sign up for the newsletter, we'll be randomly giving away a $200 giftcard to our ticketing partners at Vivid Seats. The winning subscriber will be randomly selected once a player gets to 30 hits on the season, so essentially, sometime in April. Make sure to sign up, and potentially win the giftcard!
Now, let's get down to business with the DD.
Game of the Night: Astros 8, Rangers 2. The first game of the season is our Game of the Night by default, but the relatively anonymous Astros came out with a big win on Opening Night. In the fourth, Justin Maxwell tripled in the first two runs of the 2013 season against Rangers starter Matt Harrison. Houston would add two more in the fifth after Brandon Barnes scored on a two-base error by Texas right fielder Nelson Cruz, and Ronny Cedeno scored on a Jose Altuve single. Texas got on the board in the sixth against Astros starter Bud Norris after back to back RBI singles by David Murphy and Cruz, but the Astros responded with three runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning courtesy of a three-run, pinch hit Rick Ankiel homer. Houston would finish off their scoring in the eighth after an infield single by Matt Dominguez brought home Maxwell, who reached base on his second triple of the game. Norris got the win, Harrison got the loss, and Erik Bedard got the save after allowing just one hit in 3 1/3 scoreless innings.