Mariners Spring Training Update – Day 18
Day 18 / Wednesday, February 29, 2012 / 28 Days ‘til Opening Night in Tokyo (March 28 vs. Oakland) / 44 Days ‘til Opening Night in Seattle (April 13 vs. Oakland)
After two days of wind and cooler temperatures (if you count high 50’s & 60’s as lower temps), the weather was back up to the “near perfect” description. Hardly a cloud in the sky with temperatures in the mid 60’s all day. High temperatures are expected to climb back into the 70’s over the next few days.
Quote of the Day:
“I heard him come in the clubhouse, and was like, ‘is that him?’ And then I saw him, and met him, and it was really cool.” Steve Delabar talking about meeting his childhood baseball idol Ken Griffey Jr. for the first time.
The day started with the annual MLB Security Meeting at 8:55 and the guys took the field for stretch at 10 am. It was again a pretty normal and low-key workout with individual position skills and batting practice. The team took a break for lunch (teriyaki chicken and fried rice) and were back on the field for the final Intrasquad game.
You Had to be There:
Prior to the individual position skill, shortstop Brendan Ryan took mound and was doing impersonations of several pitchers. He got the biggest laugh out of manager Eric Wedge and several players when he tried to clone the actions of All-Star closer Brandon League.
The team played the final Intrasquad game today, with this one starting at 1:05 (previous games started at 12:45). Today was basically treated with the schedule of a normal Cactus League game day, getting guys ready for what is to come for the rest of camp. You can check out some game highlights from our earlier blog post about the game in which the visitors won 5-3.
Day of Rest:
After 19 consecutive days of work for the pitchers and catchers (and coaching staff), and 12 straight days for the position players, the club will take its first (and only) official day off of the spring tomorrow. We’ve heard chatter around the clubhouse from guys about spending the day with family, catching up on rest, hitting the golf links and some planning a good meal with teammates. The daily rigors of the spring workouts can wear on a player in terms of health, so a day of rest will greatly benefit the players leading up to the Cactus League opener on Friday. As for the blog, it too will have a semi-day off, but we’ll post some material we’ve been saving for the last few days.
Elise vs. Junior:
Over the last three days, a crew from Sports Radio KJR has been in camp conducting interviews with players and coaches. Gas & Elise (Mike Gastineau & Elise Woodward) and Ian & Puckett (Ian Furness & Jason Puckett) have been a joy to have in camp and our players have enjoyed doing all the interviews. Today, Elise (a former UW basketball player) had the chance to throw some pitches to Ken Griffey Jr. on the field at Peoria Stadium. GM Jack Zduriencik and special assistant Roger Hansen were on hand as Elise fired fastballs past Junior.
Mariners VP of communications Randy Adamack arrived in camp today for a brief stay that includes meetings with MLB for the upcoming for the trip to Japan…this is Adamack’s 34th spring training with the Mariners, so he knows the lay of the land pretty well…members of the MLB Security team held a meeting with the team this morning, including Mariners Director of Security Sylvester Servance and MLB security liaison Vic Minor…Minor has been with the Seattle Police Department for over 20 years and played two seasons with the Seattle Seahawks in 1980-81 as a safety…former Mariners beat writer Jim Street (Seattle P-I & Mariners.com) made the drive up from Tucson to spend the day in camp and bug the working writers (he mentioned that 40 years ago this week he covered his first spring training with the A’s)…Street is now a writer/editor for a new golf website (along with former Seattle beat writers Bob Sherwin & Kirby Arnold) on www.golferswest.com.
Tweet of the Day:
Happy birthday to all the people who are older than me, but technically younger #LeapYear
— Shawn Kelley (@shawnkelley23) February 29, 2012
Cactus League Opener:
RHP Blake Beavan will start Friday’s Cactus League opener against the A’s at Phoenix Municipal Stadium. The game starts at 1:05 p.m. MT/12:05 p.m. PT and will be broadcast in Seattle on 710 ESPN Seattle and select stations on the Mariners Radio Network. RHP Graham Godfrey is scheduled to start for the A’s. Here is a look at the Mariners starting pitchers for the first four Cactus League Games:
3/2 at OAK – RHP Blake Beavan
3/3 vs. OAK – RHP Hector Noesi
3/4 vs. SD – LHP Jason Vargas
3/5 at SD – RHP Hisashi Iwakuma
Mini-Camp Field Trip (Part 2):
Yesterday we mentioned that a group of mini-camp players (pitchers and catchers) watched the Major League workout as part of a “Field Trip” for their mental skills training. Today, the position players (and a few pitchers) took their turn watching the big league camp practice, focusing on showing how the players prepare for each day, and also stress that the drills they do each day are also worked on at the Major League level. As a bonus, several of the players, including Ramon Morla (wearing #24), Steven Proscia and Gabriel Noriega, got the chance to meet Ken Griffey Jr. The mini-camp ends tomorrow, and the first day of minor league camp is a little over a week away.
Mark Your Calendar:
The Mariners will take tomorrow off, and begin their Cactus League season Friday on the road vs. the A’s. From there, the Mariners will play at least one game every day for 20 straight days before leaving for Japan on March 22. A complete spring schedule is listed on Mariners.com.
Important Spring Training Dates:
March 1 – Off day
March 2 – Cactus League opener (at OAK)
March 3 – Cactus League Peoria opener (vs. OAK)
March 4 – Seattle vs. SD (Charity Game at Peoria Stadium
March 5 – MiLB Pitchers/Catchers first workout
March 10 – MiLB first full-squad workout
March 16 – MiLB spring games start
March 22 – Mariners travel to Japan