February 2009

Let it begin..

Nothing better… The smell of fresh cut grass in the mornin, the crack of the bat, and heaters smackin’ the leather of a catcher’s mitt. The 2009 Major League games have officially begun.

A great time for the fans to take a break from the real world to watch their favorite clubs as they all begin their journey toward a world series championship.
For me personally, I am not slated to pitch until Friday against the Chicago White Sox. With that said, I stay back with the players who aren’t scheduled to play in the game to get some work in. For pitchers, that means a “side” bullpen session with some fundamental and PFP (Pitcher Fielding Practice) work. For position guys, that’s hack after hack to go along with baserunning drils and fielding drills.
Fans might think that their favorite players simply have an “off” day if they are not in the lineup. Well I can tell you that is not the case at all. They are at practice early in the morning working on a pitch or an approach at the plate, while some others like my teammates Eric Byrnes and Tom “Flash” Gordon are working their tail off with the trainers and strength coaches to prepare for the long demand of the season as they are being hampered right now with nagging injuries from last year.
Anyhoo, I hope this post is a help to some of the fans looking for a little insight on how spring training works if they ever ponder why a certain player isn’t in the game.
I hope to see all you Tucsonians (not sure if that’s right) at Tucson Electric Park to support the 2009 squad. This club is loaded with young talent and should be a tough competitor in the National League… So look out!
That’s all for now, see you next week. Love the comments so keep them coming, D-Back Dan out. Peace.

Javelinas in Tucson…

This morning at around 8:00 am shortly after completing my urine sample in the clubhouse, there was a topic of conversation that broke out at the breakfast table. A few guys (Brooks Brown, Clay Zavada, Hector Ambriz, Tony Barnette) were discussing a javelina sighting near their apartments the night before. For those of you who don’t know what a javelina is, think of Pumba in the disney movie “The Lion King” with jet, coarse, black hair that smells like garbage.

These fugly beasts typically travel in packs, roaming around the desert at night trying to salvage a few crumbs of food wherever they can find it. I know from a previous experience in my college years that “pumba” loves to dig through trash. Quick story, there was one night my freshman year where my roommate and I forgot about some trash we left on the porch. Little did I know this would come back to haunt us. Totally forgetting about the 8-10 trashbags we had put out, I became startled at about 3:00 am. My first thought was that there were people outside of my place havin’ a little party on our patio. As I approached the sliding glass door to open the blinds I realized what I was dealing with was a little different. There was a group of large and small black pigs ransacking through our garbage that we had forgot about that day. I flipped on the porch light thinking they would go away…they didn’t. So me being the tough guy I am, decided to march out in my underwear with a butter knife trying to scare these weird creatures away, after all I had no idea what they were. They barely flinched, maybe because their eyesight is terrible, or maybe because they had never seen a terrified human attack them half naked holding an intimidating butter knife. After my charge, I gave up, I let them have my trash.
I just thought everyone would like to know a little javelina story. Especially for those of you who aren’t lucky enough to be living among them. Thankfully, I was the lucky recipient of an encounter with these dirty pigs that I will never forget. What a great start to my blog, I will actually begin posting entries that are relevant to baseball here shortly. Thank you, and have a great day. Diamondback Dan out.
Please feel free to comment on your javelina stories, or anything else for that matter.