With all due respect to Stacey Yamigura of Marshfield, the start of the baseball season is the world’s biggest tease. We spend all winter watching 2004 playoff highlight reels, repainting the front of our houses with the Red Sox logo, and cataloguing our collection of Alan Embree action figures, counting hours, minutes and seconds until opening day. Then it arrives, and just as we feel the fever once again overtaking our bodies and the blood starting to pulse through our veins in ways not known since last October… we have an off-day.

But it’s cool. Because it’s gonna take some time for me — and, if Sunday night’s game is any indication, the entire team — to get back into the groove. And I think I’m looking forward to today’s match-up of Matt Clement and Carl Pavano even more than Boomer-Unit. It’ll likely be as telling as you’d expect the second game of a 162-game season to be, but I’ve got Clement penciled in as this year’s tenth player and it’ll be interesting to see how he handles his baptism into sport’s greatest rivalry.

Damn that 1:00pm start, though. I’m still trying to make nice-nice with the boss after my legendary production dip during last year’s playoffs. You’re not helping things, Major League Baseball.

Also, two quick things:

1) I already miss Pedro. I can’t be the only one. Can I?

2) No matter how many times I see it, the image of this guy wearing anything other than a Red Sox uniform still looks unnatural to me.

There. I’ve said it.

Thanks. And we’ll see you this afternoon.