Position players who reported early didn’t have to take the field for the pre-workout stretch until 11:05 a.m. Adam Jones approached manager Dave Trembley and sought permission to join the pitchers and catchers at 9:15 a.m. He also stayed back after the workout concluded and signed autographs for every fan that requested one.
“I think he wants to assume a lot more leadership here by example, and that’s great. That’s really needed, welcomed,” Trembley said.
Trembley and pitching coach Rick Kranitz were impressed with Koji Uehara’s bullpen session.
“I thought it was wonderful. He looked great,” Kranitz said.
“It probably didn’t show in the velocity as much, as far as pure velocity, but if you look at the arm speed and the hand speed, and you look at how the ball finishes in the strike zone, it had a lot of late life to it. I was real pleased. It was night and day from today and when he threw in Boston back in September.”
Uehara wasn’t the only pitcher who caught Kranitz’s eye.
“We saw Dennis Sarfate throw the ball as well as we’ve seen him throw, certainly as well as he threw it anytime last year,” Kranitz said. “I loved how the ball came out of (Jake) Arrieta’s hand today. There were a whole host of guys. Alfredo Simon, coming off Tommy John surgery, 10 months or 11 months, the ball came out great. (Jeremy) Guthrie threw the ball very well today. Everything was down. To me, it was a real, real positive day and something to build on.”
Trembley noted that Uehara had excellent arm speed.
“Koji looked strong,” he said. “That’s probably the best way to say it. Koji looked strong. And so did some other guys.”
Kam Mickolio also had an outstanding bullpen session.
“If you saw Mickolio throw today, I mean, that’s intimidating,” Trembley said.
“I think he’ll eventually be an end-of-the-game guy, but that’s not going to happen right now because (Mike) Gonzalez is going to be the end-of-the-game guy. But he’s a power arm and he’s got power stuff. I think eventually that’s where he’s going to end up.
“He’s got a chance to help us in the ‘pen. I think it’s time for him.”
More to come.