March 2, 2005

DEVIL RAY FEVER, CATCH IT!:

Spring training: hitting, pitching - and hope: The sun is shining, the players are relaxed, and fans are pouring into Florida and Arizona. (Vic Roberts, 3/03/05, CS Monitor)

Thirty teams gathered in two states. More than 1,750 players battling for 750 jobs over six weeks. Who will make the Major League roster? Find out this April.

That might sound a bit like the opening to a reality TV show, but the reality is that baseball spring training games are starting this week in Florida and Arizona. Players young and old hope to stretch, run, throw, catch, and hit their way onto their team's 25-man roster so they can compete in Major League Baseball's 162-game regular season.

For players the work has just begun. For fans, the beginning of spring training provides hope that this will be the year "their" team wins the World Series.

The fact that more than 250 players switched teams during the off season - a handful of them high-priced, high-profile players - has given fans reason to be optimistic for the 2005 season.

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 2, 2005 8:20 PM
Comments

With a full schedule, I get to test out XM's major league baseball broadcasts for the first time in my car on Thursday. I'm just unsure if millions of people having the ability to listen to John Sterling anywhere in the continental United States is a good thing or not...

Posted by: John at March 2, 2005 10:39 PM

Go Ex-Expos!

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at March 2, 2005 10:40 PM

It's harder to get into Cactus League games, even for lousy teams like the Brewers, than it is to get into Diamondbacks games during the regular season. Spring Training has gotten truly crazy in the last five years.

Posted by: Brandon at March 2, 2005 10:52 PM

Brandon,

The stadiums are small. The weather a heck of a lot better than back home. Where would you rather be right now, Milwaukee or Phoenix? Lots of folks schedule their vacations for spring training.

John,

Don't do that to me. My coffee just went through my nose and into the screen. I remember when that loser used to do Islander hockey games.

There are really only 3 competitive teams, at most, in the entire American League. Baseball needs a salary cap now.

Posted by: Bart at March 3, 2005 6:48 AM
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