Tigers Today

Clubhouse closed to media in the morning today and tomorrow. Baseball Assistance Team (B.A.T.) had an 8 a.m. meeting with the team this morning. Tomorrow morning, the Major League Baseball Players Association will be here at 8:30, a meeting that usually lasts a couple of hours. MLBPA visits every camp during the spring.

Tomorrow is also the ESPN Spring Training Bus visit, Tim Kirkjian and John Kruk, the K&K team. Weather tomorrow for the home game with the Yankees is iffy.

Camp Notes
Today’s game is on the Comcast Network in Philly and nationwide on the MLB Network . . . Charlie’s Phillies spring training record is 116-117, 15 ties . . . XM radio did a morning show from Bright House today . . . Valle worked on the half field with Billmeyer and Ernie Whitt, minor league catching instructor while the Tigers took BP.

This Date
On this date in Phillies history, 1972, the Phillies traded Rick Wise to the Cardinals for Steve Carlton, a deal that wasn’t very popular at the time. It turned out to be the last trade for GM John Quinn. He was replaced that June by farm director Paul Owens.

Don’t forget, visit http://www.phillies.com/alumni for vintage photos and features on Phillies alumni.

Wall of Fame
Question was posted on last blog, wondering about the annual fan voting for the Phillies Wall of Fame. It should be posted on this site this week.

Where Are They?
Every team has non-roster players in camp.

Former Phillies are scattered around the baseball camps this spring, Marlon Byrd (Mets), Nelson Figueroa (Diamondbacks), Mike Fontenot (Rays), Ben Francisco (Indians), Freddy Garcia (Padres), Tuffy Gosewich (Diamondbacks), Chad Qualls (Marlins), Cody Ransom (Padres), Wilson Valdez (Giants) and Mike Zagurski (Pirates).

Alumni who are managers: Dale Sveum (Cubs), Terry Francona (Indians), Ron Roenicke (Brewers) and Davy Johnson (Nationals).

Spring Training Memories
Pat Combs (LHP, 1989-92)
“I was invited to big league camp my first year out of Baylor University in 1989. I was so excited that I reported to camp early, on February 12. Nobody was in the locker room, but I worked out anyway. My first number for camp was 45. My roommate was Jason Grimsley.

“My fondest memory was putting on my uniform for the first time. I don’t think my feet ever hit the floor that day. It was like I was in a dream. I really enjoyed getting a chance to meet the coaches and players, who I had admired and watched play. I remember meeting Larry Bowa, thinking that I had watched him play against the Astros in the 1980 playoffs that still ranks as one of the best divisional playoff series in the history of baseball. I remember mentioning to ‘Bo’ that I was 12 years old and in the Astrodome watching Game 5. He laughed and told me that it ranked as one of his fondest baseball memories.

“My first day of pitching live BP was a day I never forgot. The position players had just reported to camp and we were pitching BP to them. The second hitter I faced was none other than Mike Schmidt. He was one of my baseball heroes. I always loved the way he played and approached the game. I was so pumped that I did not realize how hard I was throwing. I blew the first few pitches by him and he was getting upset. He finally yelled out to me to ‘take a little off, rookie!’ I was embarrassed and thought later that I had just ‘showed up’ a legend. The learning part of how to be a big leaguer was what I remember being a challenge. Some of the players were willing to help and some just let you go to figure things out for yourself.”

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