The news finally came out about the Mets dates for reporting to spring training in Port St. Lucie.
- Feb. 15 – Pitchers and catchers report
- Feb. 17 – First workout
- Feb. 19 – Position players report
- Feb. 21 – First full squad workout
- Feb. 26 – First game against Atlanta
I made the trip to PSL last year and I’m thinking about it again. Although I have to admit that the Mets lack of offseason activity has reduced my motivation to make the trek to spring training again. It’s tough to get excited about the same team coming back again that won 79 games last year.
Are you making the trip to PSL for spring training this year? Comment below.
I got back late last night from my trip to Florida for 2010 spring training. Although I was lucky enough to get great weather during my stay in Port St. Lucie, I came away with some questions about the team that I saw. It’s tough to get a real gauge on a team in spring training, but the more I watched the Mets the more I had concerns. I’ll write more about that later.
As I wrote the other day, I met up with some great people in PSL, real hardcore Mets fans. I even spent some time on Wednesday with a couple of Marlins fans and we had a good discussion about the state of the Mets, Marlins, and the division in general.
One guy that stood out that I met was Kenny Kirsch. He’s getting a business going for parody t-shirts called HowBoutThoseMets.com. The shirts are great and I always like to support a hard working guy that getting something started and turning a good idea into reality on his own. Check him out and buy one if you can.
If you haven’t been to spring training in St. Lucie, it’s a must for every Mets fan. The accessibility to players is something you just won’t get during the regular season. You can watch their morning workouts right in front of you, not to mention the games in tiny Digital Domain Park. Mark it on your calendar for next year if you haven’t been there yet.
Many Mets fans believe that the Mets have some glaring flaws in the roster, maybe even fatal ones, and I agree with that notion. But there’s something exhilarating about that day when pitchers and catchers start working out at Tradition Field, and all over Florida and Arizona. There’s hope for the Mets having a great season and a championship run for the first time in 24 years. There’s also something, for me, about the impending change of seasons from the typically rotten Northeast U.S. winter to spring and summer soon to follow.
The Mets pitchers and catchers need to be in Port St. Lucie by Thursday February 18. Already, many players have been arriving and working out. The best early coverage that I’ve seen is Adam Rubin’s blog at the Daily News.
There are some major problems with the roster: Carlos Beltran is out until May, the Mets don’t have a legitimate first baseman or catcher, and they didn’t improve a questionable starting rotation. And to everyone’s chagrin, Luis Castillo is still a Met. Even with all of those perceived problems, there’s still something exciting about the players reporting to work outs. It’s one of my favorite days of the year.
The middle of February is about the time each year that I’ve about had it with the Connecticut winter. The weather is awful and it’s great to start thinking about warm weather and sunshine. There really is nothing better than the beginning of spring training. Those roster flaws that I mentioned haven’t gotten me down yet, although they likely will soon enough. For this week, it’s thrilling to be a baseball fan. That’s all I’m thinking about until I start to see the Mets full-time lineup shake out later in the spring.
Pitchers and catchers have to be at Tradition Field in Port St. Lucie, FL on February 18. The rest of the position players are required to be there by February 23. And the first workouts are scheduled for February 25.
If you’re planning a trip to Port St. Lucie, the spring training schedule of games begins on Tuesday March 2 against Atlanta.
In my mind, the biggest question mark coming into spring training is “What kind of shape will Oliver Perez be in when he arrives?”. I’m sure there will be some new faces that haven’t signed with the Mets yet too, like Bengie Molina and possible another first baseman, maybe even Mike Lowell.
I changed the display format of the spring training schedule to make it easier to read. You can see the entire Mets spring training schedule here at The Mets Report. Now that the games have started I need to make sure everything is in order. Let me know if you have any suggested changes in the comments below.
The Mets have announced their pitching assignments for their first few games this year. From the Daily News:
Wednesday at Baltimore:
Valerio de los Santos
Thursday vs. Florida:
Friday vs. St. Louis:
Friday vs. Italy:
It’s interesting to note that the first game features all relievers. And the Friday game against Italy has some of the biggest names on the team. I wonder what the method to the madness is?
It’s great to start reading the columns and stories about the Mets that arrive early to camp in Port St. Lucie. Not only do I start to think of how this ugly winter will soon be over but how the ghosts of the last two Mets seasons may disappear. Like they never happened.
27 blown saves. 1 blown managerial firing. The 2009 season will wash that away with a roar into the playoffs. I hope.
The first few days this week we’ve learned a few things. Johan Santana feels fine after his minor offseason knee surgery. But he likely won’t be representing Venezuela in the World Baseball Classic. Classic… what a ridiculous name.
Brian Schneider won’t be representing the U.S. in the WBC. Jose Valentin will be back on a minor league contract. I have a feeling that it won’t be long until he’s managing a team in the Mets organization. He seems like a solid leader.
Maybe most importantly Scott Schoenweiss, Aaron Heilman, and Joe Smith won’t be in Port St. Lucie this year. Heilman and Schoenweiss couldn’t come back after last season. 27 blown saves and now the bullpen has been blown up.
J.J. Putz and K-Rod will be here. Get ready for some “Gasolina” and some “Thunderstruck“. It’s a mostly new bullpen expecting all-new results.
Oh, by the way we haven’t learned of any Mets testing positive for anything yet. Maybe we can have a quiet spring training and get ready to take down the World Series champion Phillies.
Photo courtesy of alpineinc
Tickets are now on sale for all games at Port St. Lucie at the Mets official site. You can get tickets for all 20 exhibition games except the two games against the Red Sox at Citi Field on April 3rd and 4th. No date has been announced yet for those games. They also have some 3, 5, and 7 night packages available for sale too.
Flickr photo courtesy of alpineinc