Another day, another photo op
Another picture perfect Clearwater day brought more picture takers. The starting rotation was the focus of USA Today and Sports Illustrated. Legendary SI photographer Walter Ioss was here for S.I. A couple of years ago Walter did a cover shoot with Cole Hamels. He needed wide angle lens for this year’s photo op.
Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt has appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Michael Jack is in camp and today he met with the media (interview will be on phillies.com). Asked to comment on the possibility that Albert Pujols might wind up playing somewhere other than St. Louis, Schmitty said that looking back he is very happy to have started and ended his Major League career in a Phillies uniform and still have a great relationship with the ball club. Michael is here as a special guest instructor.
Yesterday, there was an oddity on the Mike Schmidt field at the Carpenter Complex. He was behind the cages while another Hall of Famer, Ryne Sandberg, was throwing batting practice. Last time the Phillies had a pair of Hall of Famers on one field at the Carpenter Complex was Richie Ashburn’s last spring training.
Michael Jack will also play in the team’s annual golf tournament on Friday. A hotly-contested draft to select the tournament teams was held this morning in the coaches’ meeting room. Sorry, ESPN did not cover the draft.
Michel Jack is such a good golfer that for a time he considered playing on what is now the Champions Tour. As a team captain he drafted Cliff and Ruben. Ryan Madson was also a captain and made the only trade during the draft. To get fellow reliever Dan Meyer, Madson traded away radio voice Scott Franzke to the team captained by bullpen coach Mick Billmeyer, who is obviously looking for more air time during Phillies broadcasts. Check this blog on Monday to see which Phillies team came away with the victory.
Front office executives and a small group of players will attend a Clearwater Chamber of Commerce reception in the Bright House Field suite level following Thursday’s game against Florida State University. The reception is an annual event . . .While tickets are going like hot cakes in Clearwater, not all the games at Bright House Field are sold out. Plenty of tickets remain for March 1, 3, 8 and 28 . . . Approximately 50 minor league players were in the Paul Owens Clubhouse at the Carpenter Complex even though the minor league camp doesn’t officially open until March 3 . . . Sarge and J-Roll are invited to the White House on Thursday by the President for the Motown Tribute.
New No. 1
For the first time at Citizens Bank Park, the number 1 souvenir sold last year was Silly Bandz. That item surpassed the seven-time champion Foam Finger in terms of sales for a single season. The Silly Bandz rise to the top isn’t a stretch.
(Scott Palmer again contributed to the blog today).