Sunday, March 23, 2014

Beer, Burgers, and Baseball Part 2

Port Charlotte Sports Complex
Day three of the trip was was as spectacular as the first two. I sojourned to Port Charlotte for a game against the Tampa Bay Rays at their Spring Training facility.

Although the outcome was a lukewarm tie, 3-3, it was Tampa's A squad against the Orioles B squad. The Orioles looked good and it was another idyllic day in the sunshine with warm temperatures.

Ubaldo Jiminez
I stood near the Orioles bullpen in the outfield for the entire game and really got a sense of the pitching staff. They are going to be great. I had a lot of fun watching them and talking to them and even got a baseball tossed up to me before the end of the game from one of the pitchers. I watched the starting pitcher Ubaldo Jiminez (31) get ready for his six innings of work as well as the four relievers who followed him for an inning each: Brach, Stinson, Meeks, and Aceves. We traded quips with Troy Patton about his suspension and he made it clear that it will be "game on" when he finally joins the team after his 25 game suspension.

The Orioles are going to be awesome this season. The Orioles B team tied the Rays A Team 3-3 yesterday.


The best thing about Spring training is that it is all about baseball and the team allegiances are secondary. I have seen fans from almost every MLB Team is represented  in the parks and it is all good. Everyone is relaxed and on their best behavior. I have also enjoyed the access to the teams and the players. 

Today is Day 4 of the trip and, sadly, it will be time to call it a Spring Training and head home at the end of the day. The memories will be more than enough to get me through the 8 days until Opening Day!

-- Bob Doan, writing from Sarasota, Florida

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