|Ender Inciarte - RF||Jace Peterson - 2B|
|A.J. Pollock - CF||Cameron Maybin - CF|
|Paul Goldschmidt - 1B||Nick Markakis - RF|
|David Peralta - LF||Jonny Gomes - LF|
|Aaron Hill - 2B||Adonis Garcia - 3B|
|Jake Lamb - 3B||Nick Swisher - 1B|
|Jarrod Saltalamacchia - C||Andrelton Simmons - SS|
|Chris Owings - SS||Ryan Lavarnway - C|
|Patrick Corbin - LHP||Mike Foltynewicz - RHP|
That's part of the issue with a 162-game season, I think: it's impossible, probably even for the players, to get revved up for every single contest, and I think that might be why the NFL has largely - and unfortunately, if you ask me - taken over the throne of being America's favorite sport. According to poll resuls, the two were just about neck-and-neck in the mid-eighties, but by the turn of the millennium, the gridiron game had taken a lead of about 2-1 in people who selected it as their first choice, and that margin has remained fairly constant since. The latest poll had the NFL at 32%, baseball on 16% and college football third at 10%.
There's other interesting results to be found there (more people regard Quidditch as a "sport" than video games!), but I think I'll save a more detailed analysis for the next off-day [so it'll be a while, since we're just under way on a brutal stretch of the schedule where the Diamondbacks will play 21 games in 20 days, with a double-header in Colorado on September 1]. But I think the "big event" nature of NFL contest helps make it easier to get excited about them. Even though I don't exactly go out of my way to follow the sport, my Twitter feed is already infected with excited Cardinals fans (Arizona, not St. Louis!) and they haven't even taken the field for a pre-season game yet.
In Atlanta, we'll be hoping the offense has better luck solving Foltynewicz [yeah, I copy-pasted his name. What of it?] than they did with Teheran, but I can be fairly certain, that almost regardless, things will not go as badly for Patrick Corbin as they did for Felix Hernandez at Fenway, where he produced a game score of -6, the second worst in the American League this year. If you're wondering, the worst in the majors was the one by David Buchanan of the Phillies in the series just finished against us. His -12 was tied for the second-worst in the National League since 1936. Er.... "Well done"?