Today was one of those day where there wasn’t a lot of things that were out of the ordinary going on. Pitchers and catchers took batting practice, did drills and ran. Position players took batting practice and did fielding drills. Ryan Howard reportedly was at Brighthouse taking batting practice, but we did not make it over there Later in the afternoon, there was some workouts/long tossing by the minor leaguers that have reported early.
I think that sometimes a picture can speak more than a lot of esoteric comments on what is going on. So I present some pictures….
This is NOT how you want to start “Spring” Training. It was only a high of 50 with 25mph winds blowing in from the North. It was sunny, but it really didn’t help very much. Sadly, tomorrow will likely be worse as there is a “hard freeze” warning here, meaning it will be under freezing for several hours. So it’s a little iffy if I will be there much tomorrow and if I am there, for how long.
The chilly weather didn’t deter the Phillies Phaithful who braved the elements to see their favorite players. Usually on the first day, the program starts with a talk to the pitchers and it traditionally was given at “Seven Mounds” or the pitching mounds behind the main complex building. Ross and I thought that they may get a late start and would have the meeting inside. We got to the complex at 11 to find that they were out at 10 and were already into the PFPs or Pitcher Fielding Practice.
The first day is always a blast for me. Baseball Ross and I have been going to Spring Training for so long that we have gotten to know a lot of the regulars and it’s almost like a family reunion. That first day is always full of handshakes, hugs and catching up.
I also got to see a few of my favorite minor leaguers, which to me is my favorite part. I’ve known a bunch of these guys for what has been their entire careers and it’s nice to be remembered for always being there.
After the MLBers were done around noon, Ross and I left to get warm and grab something to eat and on our way home we passed the complex to see some players out. We were treated by getting to watch some of our MiLBer friends pitching live batting practice.
It looks like our minor leaguers reported to camp healthy and in great shape. Carlos Alonso smacked two almost out of the park, one died half way up the fence BUT it had been hit INTO THOSE ROARING WINDS! One of the guys remarked to him, “Hey Los, how about saving some?”
Colin Kleven looked really sharp and had a really crisp breaking pitch. He left a big smile on pitching coach Steve Schrenk’s face.
Over the summer I had the privilege of getting to know a few of the players for the Clearwater Threshers. One if them, Adam Morgan, began the season in Clearwater and was promoted to Reading.
Adam is a really great guy and was kind enough to take time to answer my Six Quick Questions:
1. Who was your baseball idol growing up?
Well growing up a braves fan it was hard not to enjoy watching the three stud pitchers atlanta had,Tom Glavine, John Smoltz, and Greg Maddux. Glavine was who I watched all the time. Just cause he was left handed. (haha)
2. Do you have any special sports memorabilia?
I got to meet Glavine at a local high school and got him to sign a ball. I also had a Tony Gwynn autographed baseball but the dog got ahold of it.
3. If you weren’t playing baseball, what would you want to do?
Well I was going to school majoring in criminal justice hoping to become a private investigator. If that didn’t work out, I was planning on going to fire fighting school to become a fire fighter. Basically, I wanted to be outside. Didn’t want to be stuck in a cubicle.
4. What was your favorite moment of the 2012 season?
My favorite moment had to be almost throwing a perfect game in Jupiter…almost is the key word, still have a bitter taste in my mouth after that one. Also getting called up to double A was awesome.
5. What are your plans for the off season?
My plans for the offseason are obviously lifting and staying in shape, but when I’m not doing that ill be spending most of my time in the woods. Deer season started in September so I spend majority of my weekends in South Georgia.
6. What are you most looking forward to next spring? I look forward to playing again! Coming into spring training in great shape and doing what I’m capable of doing will hopefully point me in the right direction to having a successful 2013!
I want to close by thanking Adam for taking the time to help me with my blog, I greatly appreciate it!