Batter up! Spring training baseball is about to swing into action and as part of my “day job” I was able to attend the Tampa Bay Rays spring training press conference today in Port Charlotte, Fla. Honestly, I’m not a big baseball fan but I really enjoy spring training for the energy and bit of intimacy it offers compared to major league sports.
General Manager Andrew Friedman and Manager Joe Maddon fielded questions by members of the media during the 30-minute press conference. So what’s on tap for the Rays during spring training? Um, well, unlike last year, there were no questions about Maddon’s hair.
Instead, much of the discussion was about the transition the team is going through, trading so-and-so and acquiring so-and-so. Sorry, I’m not into baseball and really don’t know who got traded where but do know change is hard but can be very exciting.
I can share what Joe Maddon said about the coming and going of players, “The guys who are gone we’re going to miss. We appreciate what they’ve done for our organization. But moving forward I feel good.”
It just wasn’t my imagination. The Grapefruit League is starting earlier this year. Maddon said of the extended training season, “I like the length for the fact that you can really take your time getting people ready, which I think prevents injury …get people ready and further more we always like to nail down what we do well.”
Maddon is such a cool, nice guy.
So tell me, are you a baseball fan? Who’s your team? And do you catch a game or two during spring training?
Visiting Orioles Spring Training Stadium in Sarasota