SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2019
As the locals often say down here, “Another day in paradise”. It got up to 85 today and it was mostly sunny, but partly cloudy. Hopefully we will see a few more of the regular roster players today than we saw yesterday. The made big leaguers don’t like those long bus rides. There are some things that need to be remembered. First the Phils will be using the DH both home and away except in maybe the last week of spring training. It gives them a chance to look at some extra hitters. They will change pitchers often and they will all be on a pitch count. They need to see enough of each of them to sort them out. One that always amuses me when I am at the park is, wins aren’t all that important. It’s all about getting the work in and strengthening the arms. Early in spring training and some into the regular season, the pitchers are usually ahead of the hitters.
Kapler did start 7 players who I thought might be on the roster for the trip north. Hoskins, Hernandez, Segura, McCutchen, Realmuto, De Los Santos and Altherr figure to go north with them, although I suspect that Altherr is on the cusp. In the first inning, Segura made a nice play at shortstop, the first one in over a year. I thought it interesting that the first run against the Phils this spring was scored on a wild pitch/passed ball. Deja Vue all over again. It turned into a fairly typical spring training game. The Phils used 26 players and the Pirates used 23. Many of them I had to look up, especially the Pirates and the Phillies not on their 60 man roster. I noticed that McCarthy and the booth crew didn’t try to announce over the air when the teams made changes. Tom condescended to announced them when they were involved in a play, or came to bat.
I think two position players to watch this spring are Dylan Cozens and Aaron Altherr. This is probably the year they have to make it, or move on. Cozens hit two doubles and drove in a run today, and Altherr went 0 for 2. Another player who may be on his way out is Adam Morgan. The Phillies have added left handers Jose Alvarez and James Pazos from the Angels and Mariners. The both had good years last year.
One reason that wins aren’t that important in Spring Training was emphasized today. These games are often won, or lost late in the game because the major leaguers have left the game and are in the club house. This game was lost by Leftwich, a double A reliever who doesn’t look like he has much of a chance to make the team. I feel that the true value of these games is to evaluate each player and not so much if the team is winning. or losing.
The crowd today was 7,279. This is kind of small for the Phils. A good crowd is from 9,000 to 11,000, Well, the Phils are in Lakeland tomorrow and won’t be televised.