Day One didn’t bring any major surprises in camp beyond the drastic differences between the Sarasota and Fort Lauderdale facilities.
No more bumping into players inside a crowded clubhouse. No more tents posing as weight rooms. No more contact highs from the gas fumes at the executive airport.
It will take some time before I stop shouting my questions to manager Dave Trembley. It wasn’t easy being heard over the sound of planes taking off beyond the outfield fence.
I can’t get used to hearing pitchers talk about their bullpen sessions at the minor league complex - on the same day that they occurred. We’re accustomed to receiving updates the following morning after the guys have returned to Fort Lauderdale. Now we wait 15 minutes and get the lowdown.
So that’s how it’s supposed to happen?
Each pitcher claimed that he felt good today. Troy Patton came the closest to raising a red flag when he stated that he’s had some trouble getting loose, but he placed the blame on the cold weather in Houston and looked forward to a heavier workload this spring.
Dennis Sarfate was checking into my hotel as I returned from the ballpark. And yes, he also feels good.
Reaching to shake my hand, Koji Uehara called me “Spencer” before his interpreter corrected him.
“Roch, Roch, Roch,” Uehara said as he tapped my chest.
Hey, it’s been a few months, so I understand.
The players will take their physicals tomorrow morning before hitting the field for the first workout. Trembley will meet with reporters afterward.
Two minor league notes:
The Triple-A Norfolk Tides will play Norfolk State in an exhibition game on April 6 at Harbor Park, with first pitch slated for 7:15 p.m.
Also, the Double-A Bowie Baysox will host live auditions on March 13 at Prince George’s Stadium for anyone interested in singing the national anthem before a 2010 home game. Gates will open for registration at 9 a.m. and auditions begin 30 minutes later.