Tank-top tan lines, the smell of freshly cut grass, eating cracker jacks and throwing back a few cold ones is soon upon us. You may be rolling your eyes since most people as south as Georgia are currently experiencing snow, but fear not Spring is on the way.
Spring Training, that is.
Today marks the first official day of Spring Training for Major League Baseball. Pitchers and catchers from all 30 teams will be reporting to their respective states, Florida and Arizona, today and tomorrow to begin camp, followed by the rest of the squad by Tuesday.
With Opening Day a mere month-and-a-half out, a lot can happen between now and April 6th. This is the time that position battles occur and 25-man rosters are finalized.
Here are a few story lines to look out for over the course of the next few weeks:
One of the biggest headlines going into the season, Rodriguez who didn’t play a single inning in 2014 after being suspended for the use of Performance Enhancing Drugs is set to return. This can go one of many ways:
Will A-Rod be any good? Not to be a downer, but if for one moment in his entire career you thought he was just THAT good on his own, you’re sadly mistaken. A-Rod has a history of running with the wrong crowd and many failed drug tests to prove it. Plus there is the possibility that he may go back to relying on his ole friend.
Do the Yankees even want him anymore? During the course of spring training, he may show moments of the player he once was, but don’t count on that being enough to stay keep him on the starting roster. And let’s not forget A-Rod is turning the big 4-0 and has stats of being a below average defensive player.
Yankees and Red Sox aren’t the favorites in 2015
According to the Atlantis sports book in Reno, Nevada oddsmakers set their over/under numbers for the 2015 season and have tabbed the Washington Nationals and Los Angeles Dodgers to have the highest projected season win totals with 90 or greater.
The reason this is huge is because in the 17 years the league has had 30 teams, only six teams have won 90 games.
If you’re not familiar with the name, he’s the new MLB Commissioner. Not to say that over the course of a few weeks or even during the whole season many changes will be made, but rest assured Manfred will be heard.
He has made it abundantly clear that change is on the horizon especially in terms of pace of game and offense.
Giancarlo makes the list for two reasons.
First, he’s the most expensive player in baseball after signing a 13-year contract worth $325 million this past winter.
Secondly, he will be making his debut after suffering multiple facial fractures, dental damage and a facial laceration requiring stitches after being hit in the face last September in the fifth inning against the Brewers.
Featured image via Fox’s The Buzzer