If you’re a true baseball fan, then you get excited each winter when you hear the phrase ‘pitchers & catchers.’ It signifies the end of a long off season and the beginning of a new baseball season.
Today, pitchers and catchers from the Orioles, Twins, Athletics, Cubs, Reds, Phillies, Pirates, Cardinals and Giants reported to spring training. In addition to the pitchers and catchers, often times position players will show up as well to get some early work in and shake off the rust from the winter months.
I love Spring Training. I’ve gone to Florida for Spring Training for five years in a row, starting in 2007. The winters in Pennsylvania are often very gloomy, so heading down to Spring Training really brightens my mood. I’m not in Florida right now, but I did find some pictures to cheer you baseball fans up from the winter doldrums.
Baseball is back!
New Pirates first baseman Casey McGehee hasn’t played much first in his career, but is already practicing the position in Spring Training:
Pedro Alvarez has been a bust so far in his young major league career. He’s still young, and the third base job is his to lose. If he does lose it, McGehee will move to 3B. Here’s Pedro working on his fielding:
New Pirates pitcher Erik Bedard delivers a pitch while pitching coach Ray Searage does his best not to distract him by not saying anything:
Neil Walker does some soft tossing with Pedro Alvarez:
In the Phillies camp, Roy Halladay pulled into Spring Training in a car from about a hundred years ago:
And Jonathan Papelbon did some long tossing.
The Reds pitchers did some light stretching and for me, might just be the favorites to win the NL Central:
In Giants camp, jerseys for Tim Lincecum, Brian Wilson, and Matt Cain are ready to go for the first day of workouts:
And Matt Cain addressed the media:
The defending World Series champion St Louis Cardinals reported to camp and new manager Mike Matheny fielded a bevy of questions from the media:
While their pitchers worked out on a practice field:
And Yadier Molina showed up to camp with a brand new tattoo. I guess he’s not counting on winning the world series in 2012, because I don’t see place to fit ‘2012’ on that trophy anywhere.
The hapless Cubs were ready to go as Theo Epstein and Dale Sveum held a media session. The Cubs have so many problems with bad contracts. Will these guys be able to save this sinking ship?
And Bryan LaHair signed autographs for a young fan at Fitch Park:
The Oakland Athletics had some buzz in camp as news swirled that they may sign ex-slugger and major distraction Manny Ramirez. In the meantime, the jerseys were hung with care in the clubhouse:
And Tommy Milone warmed up on the A’s spring training field.
The Twins will try and rebound off of a horrific season in which they lost 99 games. Carl Pavano lounged in the clubhouse and explained exactly how they would turn things around:
And finally, the Orioles reported to their spring training home to try and figure out how to perform better this year than the Yankees, Red Sox and Rays.
Is anyone else excited for the 2012 season?
47 days until opening day, 14 days the first broadcasted game on MLB TV (Yankees vs Phillies), and 1 day left to win this Dustin Pedroia T-Shirt.