Pitchers and catchers have spent months ranging out in the wild, fattening up for the regular season. Over the past week they have each made the long journey to the green fields of Florida where grass is green, the sunshine is warm, and the breezes are gentle. Now all the pitchers and catchers carrying the Curly W mark have been gathered together at Viera to meet their new coaches and prepare themselves for the battlefield that is major league baseball!
Here today we have a collection of videos, pictures, and other tidbits to give you a glimpse into the lives of Buffalo and his friends as they work together to turn themselves into the fighting machine that is the Washington Nationals:
I believe there are around 36 pitchers and catchers in big league camp this year. Here they are still in one herd preparing to stampede. I hear this is pretty normal behavior when players are fresh off the range. I'm sure the coaches will get them separated out and trained in no time at all.
Matt Belisle came into camp with a calf thing, Dusty said, but otherwise everybody came out of today healthy.— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) February 20, 2016
Look, I'm not the only one with the cattle wrangling humor bug here. Okay, maybe it's mostly me.
Let's get to the baseball. Here are Max Scherzer and Joe Ross after being sent to a "bull pen" to show off their stuff.
Here's Joe Ross... pic.twitter.com/tFKYIptD5t— Mark Zuckerman (@MarkZuckerman) February 20, 2016
Actual official pitching for the first time in months! Looks like all the parts still work, so can we start games now?
Here's the other perspective on what's happening as our new coaches get their first looks at some of our crown jewels:
Maddux and Baker check out Ross. pic.twitter.com/R5i73a6tgm— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) February 20, 2016
Maddux sure looks like he knows what he's doing, doesn't he? You can tell by the way he's standing. We all heard glowing reports about him when he was hired this winter to be the pitching coach. I can't wait so see if he can figure out a way to get all our pitchers to throw 100 mph or help them develop five plus pitches each. That would be cool.
During flat grounds, Maddux told Scherzer he had 1 min. Max said "3 more." 3 pitches later, Maddux asked if he was good. "3 more," he said.— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) February 20, 2016
In other words, Scherzer is already back at it. Had played catch with Ross. Walked off field with arm around him, advising about his stride.— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) February 20, 2016
I love all the pictures (and videos), but it is these little tidbits that get me all excited about watching these guys. I'm sure he's not the only veteran taking youngsters under his wing, but Max continues to rock. Maddux needs to learn not to be a pushover.
Kids asked Dusty for a pic. Got this instead... pic.twitter.com/ukGnGbmc9x— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) February 20, 2016
I have a gut feeling that this new coach of ours is a solid guy. I do hope that he isn't so fast to take the ball away from pitchers once the season starts just to make fans happy, but I'll let it slide this time.
Papelbon and Gio and PFPs. pic.twitter.com/rGn9NMvDm4— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) February 20, 2016
That's right. It's not all fun and games. The pitchers had to spend some of their time doing actual work. I have to admit, every time I watch that video Papelbon is hustling to first base. He probably knew we'd be watching for that.
This has absolutely nothing to do with spring training, but Werth's Great Dane and I do share the same cool name. I also hear pictures of cute animals are very popular on the internet.
This year's beard is full, bushy, luxurious, even glorious. The secret ingredient is apparently an abundance of beauty rest during the off-season.
Rejoice, there is a lot more spring training ahead!