The Phillies’ pitchers and catchers show up in Clearwater for Spring Training today, February 18.
Meanwhile, back in Philly, it’s 30 degrees outside, the snow mounds prevent the sidewalks from being more than one normal person or half an obese person wide, and I got reamed out by one of my clients today for not cleaning up her dog’s diarrhea to her liking. Yes, you can always tell when the calendar’s shifting to spring, or whatever the dumb cliche is.
And for the record, I did an awesome job.
Haven’t Roy and Cole been down there since, like, November anyway? And Chase Utley showed up, despite not being a pitcher or catcher. Apparently, he stowed away in one of the equipment trucks and when they opened it, everybody saw him and said “Oh, Chase!” and applauded while the studio audience went wild.
“I’m not here,” Chase told reporters. Ha ha, Chase. You so crazy.
Eric Bruntlett tried the same thing last year and they just slammed the door shut, disgusted, and told the driver to send the truck off a bridge.
Eric Bruntlett: I. WILL. NEVER. STOP.
Speaking of Spring Training, I wonder what the hell Hal Bodley thinks of Spring Training:
“My first Spring Training was in 1958. I climbed onboard the crowded Silver Meteor for a grueling, 24-hour train ride to Clearwater, for me the long-awaited promised land.”
OH MY GOD HAL BODLEY WHO GIVES A SHIT.
“For me and millions of fans, the rights of spring signal the start of a new beginning.”
What? ”The start of a new beginning”? What the hell kind of redundancy is that? You might say Spring Training is the start of the season, because it happens before all of the games.
Hey, congrats, Mr. Bodley. Spring Training has started and you’re blabbing away to a TV camera about a train and I’m apparently unable to get the hang of mopping up dog shit. I can’t figure out who deserves to be talking about baseball less. At least you were able to do it without bringing up that painfully overplayed topic of conversa–
“The Phillies let one of the top left-handers in the game today — 2.89 ERA over his last 455 innings — leave.”
I can’t even do this right now. What are your words to you, Hal? What do they sound like when they leave your lips and hit your ears? Do they sound like the profound thoughts of a seasoned sportswriter? Because to me they sound like noise, filling the air with doddering anecdotes and repetitively pointless observations. This is like visitor’s day at the nursing home, with you, the crusty old-timer, retelling the same stories we’ve thousands of times, while we, the bored teenagers playing Game Boy, can’t wait to get the hell out of there and find someone to talk to who can formulate a rational thought without–
“Will the fans forgive them for trading Cliff Lee?”
A. No, never. We will not show up to the stadium, we will not spend $9 on shitty beer, we will not cheer or wave towels or taunt children in Mets’ jerseys because Cliff Lee was dealt to the Mariners. It’s all over. Nailed it, Hal. Journalistic inquiry of the decade.
B. Who the hell cares? Since when does “fan forgiveness” factor into the direction a team’s season goes?
Check back tomorrow, when I’ve got a more positive outlook on things! I’m a dog walker, by the way. That’s what a film degree gets you.