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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Back from the Desert

I returned yesterday from my annual trip to spring training in Arizona and so thought I would post a couple of pictures today. Had a great time hanging out with Ron Hostetter, his brother, and their friend watching baseball of course in addition to taking in a Suns game. Unfortunately for them the Royals lost all three games we saw them play and looked very bad in doing so. Poor defense, poor pitching, and not much hitting to speak of.

Update (3/13): My column this week on Baseball Prospectus titled "Spring Fling" is full of news and notes from four of the camps I visited. From Jason Kendall batting ninth to John Bale's release point to Brian Bannister's quest to beat DIPs, take a look.

This is the first year I visited the Angels camp in Tempe and took in the A's and Angels game on Monday afternoon. It's a beautiful setting and a nice little ballpark.



I believe this is a shot of Daric Barton who homered in the game.



We saw the Cubs play in Surprise on Sunday afternoon and pummel the Royals 13-1. Kerry Wood worked a perfect inning and looked very good touching 98 and showing a nice slider.



I also spent some time at the Rangers camp and in addition to taking in a B-game played against their complex partners the Royals, watched some BP. Here Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Hank Blalock discuss some of the finer points of hiting.



While in the desert I was also able to catch dinner with Christina Kahrl and Kevin Goldstein who were in town for a book signing and several media events. It was great to meet Kevin for the first time.

Once again it was a very successful trip and it's hard to disagree with Ron when he says Surprise is his favorite place on planet earth.

7 comments:

Ron Hostetter said...

Thanks for letting us hang out with you in Arizona. I just finished your BP column - great stuff. I'd never hear about Bale's release point before. It reminds me of how Jimmy Gobble suddenly start throwing side-armed against lefties last year. It seemed pretty effective for him.

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