Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia Phillies vs. Texas Rangers Game Day: March 31, 2014 - Opening Day!

The 2014 season begins as the Phillies travel to Arlington, Texas to take on the Texas Rangers. Please join us as we provide in-game updates on all the action in the comments section below.

Game Day Info

Philadelphia Phillies (0-0) vs. Texas Rangers (0-0)

Time and Location: 2:05 PM (Eastern) at Globe Life Park, Arlington, TX

Scheduled Starters: Cliff Lee (0-0) vs. Tanner Scheppers (0-0)

TV: Comcast SportsNet

Radio: 1210 WPHT

Preview

Tanner Scheppers. Image Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

For the second straight year, the Phillies will begin their season against an American League opponent (They faced the Royals in 2013). Since the game is being played in Arlington, that means they will require a designated hitter. Dom Brown will handle those duties, with Tony Gwynn, Jr. taking over Brown’s usual spot in left field.

Cliff Lee will get the Opening Day start for the Phillies. This is the first time he will have that honor with the Phillies, although he got the nod for the Cleveland Indians back in 2009.

Opposing him on the mound will be Tanner Scheppers. The young righty is entering his second season with the Rangers, but his first as a starting pitcher.  He is coming off a successful 2013 season that saw him go 6-2 with a 1.88 ERA in 76 relief appearances. It was expected that Rangers’ ace Yu Darvish would get the Opening Day start, but he will be starting the season on the disabled list.

The Rangers’ lineup features offseason additions Shin-soo Choo and Prince Fielder as well as holdovers Elvis Andrus and Adrian Beltre.

Link of Interest

Phillies Team SitePhillies focus on defense, versatility in finalizing roster

The Phillies appreciate that they have an older roster. That is why one of the things they valued when putting together a bench is versatility. They chose players who could handle mutliple positions and multiple roles, in case some of the veteran starters need more frequent days off.

One thing that might have been sacrificed with this approach was power. John Mayberry, Jr. is the only projected bench player who possesses much pop. The Phillies hope that their athleticism will help compensate for that.

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