Adam Eaton's first start of the season Saturday began ominously.
Another walk in the second inning contributed to another run. After two, the Reds led 2-0.
Was anyone else having flashbacks to 2007? 6.29 ERA, worst in the league among starters. Phantom injuries. Nightmares of an asenine three-year contract at more than $8 million per year. Eaton was about to completely unravel... again.
What ensued could be compared to turning water into wine. 16 of 18 batters retired. 78 pitches through seven innings. Sure, he gave up a game-tying home run to Patterson in the eighth inning and the Phillies went on to lose the game, but Adam Eaton was darn near dominant.
Last year, Eaton pitched at least seven innings exactly four times in 30 starts. On this day, he went 7 2/3 innings and gave up three earned runs. I just pinched myself.
Yes, Adam Eaton's contract is still ludicrous for a pitcher who never really had a good season. Yes, it's way too early to proclaim Adam Eaton a Cy Young contender. And yes, deep down, I can't help but think that he still stinks. But for one day, Eaton was good in the neighborhood, and some Phillies fans are now, dare I say, optimistic with regards to Adam Eaton.