It won't be long now
Chris Ruddick - MLB Editor|
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
You may tend to disagree if you reside in the frigid Northeast at the moment, but spring is indeed around the corner.
There is no greater tell-tale sign that winter is nearing the rearview mirror than the start of Major League Baseball spring training. By now, all teams have in some form reported and it won't be long until actual games are being played.
Until that happens, though, we are being bombarded by up-to-the-minute Twitter updates from camps in both Florida and Arizona. I'm all for the access, but do I really need to know what type of bottled water Alex Rodriguez carried with him to his first formal batting session?
So, in keeping with that theme, here are a few thoughts on each team, in 140 characters or less, as they begin their training sessions:
@Angels: Where will Scioscia slot Trout in the lineup? Some think he'll hit third.
@Astros: Let's hope new manager A.J. Hinch has a better run this time than his maiden voyage into the managerial waters with Arizona from 2009-10.
@Athletics: A's had the oddest offseason of any team in the league. Have no idea what to make of this club. Team, though, is very high on SS Marcus Semien
@BlueJays: Team insists Brett Cecil is going to be their closer, yet they continue to sniff around free agents Francisco Rodriguez and Rafael Soriano.
@Braves: In case you don't know B.J. Upton now going with his given name of Melvin Upton Jr.
@Brewers: Is there any chance that Ryan Braun ever gets back to being the player who was the 2011 NL MVP?
@Cardinals: Maybe I am in the minority but I still think Jason Heyward has the potential to one day win an MVP award. Change of scenery will help him.
@Cubs: Most interesting team in the league at the moment. May be tough to keep top prospect Kris Bryant off the roster.
@Dbacks: If you are looking for something to be excited about look no further than pitching prospect Archie Bradley.
@Dodgers: Could the Dodgers be in the closer market now that Kenley Jensen out a while with a foot injury?
@Indians: Can Michael Brantley and Corey Kluber follow up breakout seasons from a year ago? If they do Tribe could be interesting.
@Mariners: Mariners may have finally given King Felix a lineup that will compete for a playoff spot.
@Marlins: Thankfully Giancarlo has no after-effects from ugly hit-by-pitch. Still, season won't start for Marlins until Fernandez returns.
@Mets: Matt Harvey right now is as important to them as any player in the league is to their team.
@Nationals: Were probably already the team to beat before signing Max Scherzer. Now the expectations are really amped up. Can they live up to the hype?
@Orioles: No power in this lineup. Would not be shocked to see them get into the Ryan Howard business soon.
@Padres: Team that wins the winter rarely wins during the season. Perhaps Pads become the exception. Ticket sales, though, are up 600 percent #Confirmed
@Phillies: Cole Hamels, Ryan Howard, Cliff Lee all on roster at start of spring training. Will they be on it Opening Day?
@Pirates: This team may have the best OF in baseball - McCutchen, Polanco, Marte.
@Rangers: All eyes on the returning Prince Fielder this spring. As Prince goes, so goes the lineup.
@RaysBaseball: Nobody has bigger shoes to fill this spring than new Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash.
@Reds: This may be asking a lot, but the Reds need Joey Votto to stay healthy.
@RedSox: The Red Sox still need a front-of-the-line pitcher if they want to really compete. Hamels anyone?
@Rockies: So, will this be the year the Rockies finally pull the trigger on a Tulo or CarGo deal?
@Royals: Ned Yost's group won't be sneaking up on anyone this season. Now let's see how they handle being the hunted.
@SFGiants: Champs have a ton of questions coming into camp. 3B? Hudson? Cain?
@Tigers: Big thing to watch for the Tigers this spring will be them locking up David Price to a long-term deal.
@Twins: New skipper Paul Molitor has already named Phil Hughes his Opening Day starter.
@WhiteSox: You looking for an early AL Rookie of the Year candidate, how about White Sox LHP Carlos Rodon.
@Yankees: You may not have heard, but Alex Rodriguez is back in town.