Quiet For Now
Things were kind of quiet at Bright House Field on Wednesday, where the Phillies begin spring training again on Sunday.
Field supervisor Opie Cheek and his crew have done a terrific job with the fields. Don’t know if grass can get any greener.
57 lockers are in numerical order from # 3 (Pence) to #79 (DeFratus) in the clubhouse. Oh, there are the usual familiar Phillies names, Howard, Rollins, Utley, Victorino, Hamels, Lee, Halladay and Ruiz. There are a lot of names more familiar to Phillies fans in Lehigh Valley, Reading, Clearwater or Lakewood.
Then, big league names who’ll be wearing Phillies pinstripes for the first time, Papelbon, Thome, Pierre, Wigginton, Qualls, Willis, Pineiro. OK, OK, Thome has worn the uniform before.
Two indoor batting cages located under the left field stands were empty. White baseballs dot the green Astroturf, lying there despite a big sign in red letters, Pick Up Baseballs When Finished. Missing on the turf are empty sunflower seats, proving that someone pays attention to another big sign, No Sunflower Seeds.
In a storage room at the back end of the clubhouse was a lot of luggage waiting to be claimed by the players. Two baby strollers, three bicycles and ten golf bags help fill the room. None of those items belong to me!
Outside the ball park and at Carpenter Complex about a dozen Phillies fans were peeking from behind chain link fences, hoping to get a glimpse of one of the players and/or an autograph. Fans show up as early as 6 a.m. seeking autographs.
With the return of Cliff Lee to the rotation, the Phillies were the major media story in spring training a year ago. Chances are the masses won’t be there this spring. The Tigers camp in Lakewood (Prince Fielder) will get a lot of media attention. Out in Arizona, the Angels camp (Albert Pujols) will attract the masses.
Friday morning, Ruben, Charlie and their respective staffs, including minor league instructors in camp, will gather in the large meeting room on the second floor of the Carpenter Complex clubhouse. They’ll spend most of the day discussing every one of the 58 players in camp.
On Saturday, the same staffs will have a golf outing and then on Sunday, the 10 a.m. daily workouts get underway at Carpenter Complex. Can’t wait to hear the first pop of a catcher’s mitt.