The Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies have developed a heated rivalry in recent years, and it will be renewed Monday night on Opening Day. Though the teams seem to be headed in different directions, there is still plenty to watch.
The Braves led the Grapefruit League with 48 home runs, led by Freddie Freeman's seven bombs during Spring Training. Justin Upton and Juan Francisco tied for second on the team with six. Andrelton Simmons is also swinging a hot bat, as he .292 with three homers in eight games after his return from the World Baseball Classic.
Tim Hudson will start his first Opening Day since 2008 and his third as a Brave, but this is his first Opening Day start at Turner Field. He's 1-0 with a 2.79 ERA in five career Opening Day starts. He also enters the 2013 season with 197 career wins.
The Phillies, meanwhile, enter with aging, albiet still talented lineup. Newcomers Michael Young and Ben Revere look to aid a lineup that has both Chase Utley and Ryan Howard on Opening Day for the first time since 2010. This season could also be a breakout year for Domonic Brown, so keep an eye on him throughout the year.
It seems that Cole Hamels always gives the Braves fits, but the truth is that he's just 12-7 in 27 starts against them. This will be Hamels' first Opening Day start.
Monday, 7:10 p.m. on Fox Sports South: Braves RH Tim Hudson (16-7, 3.62 ERA in 2012) vs. LH Cole Hamels (17-6, 3.05 in 2012)
Wednesday, 7:10 p.m. on Fox Sports South: Braves LH Paul Maholm (13-11, 3.67) vs. RH Roy Halladay (11-8, 4.49)
Thursday, 7:10 p.m. on SportSouth: Braves RH Kris Medlen (10-1, 1.57) vs. LH Cliff Lee (6-9, 3.16)
Atlanta, Atlanta Braves, MLB, Philadelphia Phillies