Warm Thoughts

Spring training tickets go on sale Thursday right here on phillies.com. Then, four weeks from today, the equipment truck leaves Citizens Bank Park for Bright House Field. Three weeks from tomorrow (Wednesday) is the first day for pitchers and catchers.

The sound of a bat hitting a ball on Wednesday evening at Citizens Bank Park doesn’t mean the season is here. Rather some of the 135 Phantasy Campers will be getting batting practice in the cages. Clearwater will host the annual Phillies Phantasy Camp, January 16-20.

Alumni Notes
Ruben Amaro Sr. and Ruben Amaro Jr. are being inducted into the Latin American International Hall of Fame on Saturday in Laredo, TX.

Richie Hebner is back in the game as a hitting coach for New Hampshire (Blue Jays, AA). Bobby Thigpen is the White Sox new bullpen coach. Greg Gross, hitting coach with Reno (Diamondbacks, AAA).

Mike Lieberthal became a daddy again in December, third son, Case.

Prospects Program
Major League Baseball’s annual Prospect Development Program will be held Thursday through Sunday in Virginia. Phillies participants will be Darin Ruf, Cesar Hernandez and Jonathan Pettibone.

The Phillies own similar program will take place at Citizens Bank Park, January 15-18.

Happy Birthday
To the following Alumni………….
January 7—OF Scott Reid (66), RHP Ray Semproch (82), INF Alvin Dark (91) . . . January 8—INF Randy Ready (53) . . . January 9—SS Ivan deJesus (60) . . . January 11—RHP Ben Rivera (45), RHP Donn Pall (51).

Donn is the answer to a trivia question: Who recorded the last out when the Phillies clinched the 1993 NL East title in Pittsburgh on September 28?

Special Birthday
January 7, Lester Shenk, my dad, who turned 97!

Alumni Online Page
Paul Hagen has an interesting “Where Are They now?” feature on Lee Thomas, GM of the Phillies 1993 NL champions, on http://www.phillies.com/alumni.

Also new is a terrific photo of the three catchers in the Phillies Wall of Fame.

Check it out.

Special Thanks
MLB.com has posted the top 100 blogs for 2012. Thanks to all of you, Phillies Insider is #15 in the Pro category.

That means you clicked on the blog and then fell asleep reading it, much better than the other way around.

Appreciate your support!

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