Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Spring Training In Phoenix, Part Deux!"

Well, most everybody on the respective teams are here now.  Players all here and showing daily improvement.   "Real games" are being played and it's good to see baseball again.  Spring training is a real treat because you get to see some of the younger guys who may fit into the teams plans in a couple of years but are getting a "look-see" by the managers.

There were a bunch of Padres and Mariners fans in the Costco about three blocks from the stadium.  I think they all came in just to lunch on the foot length loaded hot dogs and polish sausages with big soda for $1.50. What a deal!  I joined them!

I drove by the Peoria complex on Friday and the eating and drinking establishments were doing well.  Folks were walking up from Stadium Way to catch lunch at Chick-Fil A and In N Out Burger and Chipotles and Stewart Anderson's and quaffing mid-day beers at the numerous sports bars within a two-block radius. Some of the wives and kids were heading to the huge Arrowhead Mall just two blocks away, while the guys were "resting", beer in hand, at one of the sports bars across the street from the Padres field.

This first real weekend of "play" has been marked by unusually "bad" weather.  Cloudy and cool with highs in the 60's.  The weekend also brought rain but, beginning on Tuesday the weather folks say we'll be back into the high 70's with sunshine for fans and players alike.  March always bring's Arizona's finest spring weather; clear, warm sunny days, just right for baseball.

I'm going to head out to Surprise today to see how the Texas Rangers and KC Royals are faring over there.  Spring Training ticket sales last year was down as the economy took its toll, but the sales offices are reporting record ticket sales this year at all the spring training complexes. 

It's nice to see baseball fans from all over having a ball in Arizona.  Yeah, the Cubs fans are still the rowdiest but looks like a lot of festive fans from all over are enthusiastic about their teams.  The midwest snowbirds, who perch here all winter are mixing it up well with all the spring training fans and local businesses are enjoying the crowds, and profits, once again.

I'm splitting my alllegiance between the Padres and Red Sox this year.  The "new" Padres are a puzzle to me now and I'm curious to see how they will do.  I became an instant Red Sox fan with the trade of Adrian Gonzales to that team.  He's going to have a big year in Boston and I can't wait to see Agon pounding that green monster!  Gotta get up to Vegas and place a short odds bet on the Sox to win the AL East and put a couple of bucks on the Padres 100-1 odds to win the world series!

Play ball!

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