In case you didn’t hear, Dave(y) Martinez brought camels into Spring Training yesterday. Yes, yes, very big deal.
“All winter long I heard about the proverbial ‘hump,’” Martinez explained, referring to the Nationals’ inability to get over the NLDS hump and advance in the postseason.
“So, it came to me a while ago. I didn’t know if we could pull it off because I didn’t know if we could get the camels.”
Bobby Henley and Tim Bogar just rolled into today’s Circle of Trust meeting on camels. pic.twitter.com/XnvKxO47bX— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) February 28, 2018
The current scene at Nationals camp. pic.twitter.com/kXZVwcrP5S— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) February 28, 2018
According to Davey Martinez, he just wanted to address “the hump” head-on and have some fun with it:
Dave Martinez has heard about the Nationals’ proverbial hump since he became manager so he said he wanted to bring the hump to them. pic.twitter.com/o0odvgF1dj— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) February 28, 2018
However, how did the players feel? The pitching staff all gathered around for a photo with the camels, and Joe Ross even got a close-up with one.
Michael A. Taylor had more vulgar comments to make:
This line from Michael A. Taylor in @MarkZuckerman’s write-up of the camel activities at Nats camp had me laughing for a good 45 seconds. pic.twitter.com/ZxkXDOWwFD— Dan Kolko (@masnKolko) February 28, 2018
However, it was closer Sean Doolittle who took the most qualitative and quantitative look possible at the camel appearance in camp, claiming that the quadrupeds had a real shot to make the team.
It’s easy to think this might be a publicity stunt, but once you look at the scouting report you can start to see how these guys are going to improve our club. pic.twitter.com/HkIFYsFO0Y— Obi-Sean Kenobi (@whatwouldDOOdo) February 28, 2018
- Can carry the team (can haul 600lbs up to 25mi/day)— Obi-Sean Kenobi (@whatwouldDOOdo) February 28, 2018
- Can take the heat (camels don’t sweat even when temps reach 120°)
- Good at taking walks (can go 100mi w/o water)
- Good speed (camels can reach 40mph)
- Team players (camels are pack animals used to working in groups)
- Good footwork (unlike most quadrupeds camels move both legs on one side of the body at the same time)— Obi-Sean Kenobi (@whatwouldDOOdo) February 28, 2018
- Great clubhouse presents (camel wool is great for making socks and hats and their milk never curdles)
- Can made adjustments (their nostrils close to keep out desert sand)
Overall, Doolittle makes an excellent point: perhaps Martinez was really bringing in the camels to see if they could help in any way. Perhaps as a more rustic version of a bullpen cart?