Day two of Pitchers and Catchers and even fewer fans were at the Complex. Perhaps people are waiting until the full team practice on Friday, or maybe fams have less of an emotional connection to the current group on the Major League roster. Oh well, more room for those of us who are here.
After the players completed their stretching and calisthenics, I made my way over to Spectrum Field (yes, they are finally effecting the signage changes) to watch the position players take batting practice. We were permitted in the stands well down the left field line. If you are familiar with the stadium layout, we were in the section next to the VIP Diamond Dugout. We spent almost as much time trying to figure out who was batting as we did watching their at bats.
In the above picture, the second group of batters has gathered while group one is finishing up. With 6 players to a group and a handful of coaches, that’s 15 or more windbreakers. Sheesh! Some guys were easy to identify. That’s Herrera on the far left. Can’t miss the way he stands. Charlie stands out and I think Franco was easy to spot, but the rest all look alike to me.
Finally figured out that the first group included Herrera, Franco, Saunders, Galvis, Kendrick, and Blanco. Group two included Gomez, Florian, Goeddel, Coghlan, Joseph, and Altherr. Saunders got a hold of a couple but no one else really stood out.
Group three was easily identifiable (for me) and included Kingery, Hoskins, Crawford, Perkins, Cozens, and Featherston. Some better contact from this group. Perkins stood out. Why do we always seem to overlook him? With the off season acquisitions, I was recounting the potentially powerful Lehigh Valley line up to a friend and listed an outfield of Williams, Quinn, Cozens, Pullin and completely forgot Goeddel and Perkins.
The fourth group contained the last 5 position players in camp to date – Pullin, Stassi, Quinn, Nava, and Williams. Pullin stood out. He put several balls on the berm, in the bullpen, and drove one off the upper portion of the batter’s eye in center field. He’s probably destined to start the season in Reading, but he looks like he’s going to make any decision short of Lehigh Valley difficult.
Somebody asked about the physical size of some of the players. Foremost among the requests was Crawford. He looks fit but not any bigger than I remember.
In the above photo Crawford doesn’t look as “thick”as Kingery who seems to have larger thighs and forearms. Below, he looks fine to me.
I got back to the Complex in time to watch the catchers’ pop up drill. We had strong gusts today on the exposed fields at the Complex. Alfaro crashed into the fence in a futile attempt to catch a ball that caroomed of the fence well above his reach. I happened to be on the other side of the fence and cowered into a classic turtle position to avoid the collision that would never occur. Because, you know, there was a 40′ fence in the way. I think i heard Jorge say a bad word when he hit the fence.
Tomorrow, I think I’m going to spend the day with the pitchers. PFPs can be boring, but BP when you can’t identify batters is too.
A little updated numerology. The Phillies issue numbers from 2 thru 99 to 90 players coaches and spring instructors and guest instructors.
- Players and coaches get numbers from 2-86, and 94 (Hinojosa)
- Spring instructors get 87-99, skipping 94.
- Guest instructors are former Phillies and they wear their old numbers even though they may be issued to current players except for Mike Schmidt’s #20 (a lot of coaches and instructors wear wind breakers that hide their numbers).
- Unissued numbers include –
- #1 – Ashburn (# retired)
- #6 – last worn by Ryan Howard
- #11 – last worn by Jimmy Rollins
- #14 – Bunning (# retired)
- #20 – Schmidt (# retired, although he wears his as a guest instructor)
- #26 – last worn by Chase Utley
- #32 – Carlton (# retired)
- #35 – last worn by Cole Hamels
- #36 – Roberts (# retired)
- #41 – Charlie Manuel
- #42 – Jackie Robinson (# retired league-wide)
- #43 – last worn by Philip Klein
- #51 – last worn by Carlos Ruiz
- #52 – last worn by Severino Gonzalez
- #69 – never assigned
- Shared numbers –
- #18 – Pedro Florimon, Wes Helms
- #45 – Pete Mackanin, Chad Durbin
- #47 – Howie Kendrick, Larry Andersen
- #54 – Pedro Beato, Brad Lidge
In the afternoon session, the minor leaguers who are early reports worked out. Cord Sandberg, Mitch Walding, Austin Bossart, Caleb Eldridge, and Luke Maglich took batting practice. Walding stood out. Sandy Ohio would be proud. Pitchers threw out of sight then came back to shag balls. Walding and Eldridge took ground balls at the corners after BP. Nick Fanti was a new face among the pitchers. Luis Encarnacion is also here but seems to be working his way back from a leg injury he suffered sliding into second during Instructs. I’m pretty sure that Zach Green is here, too. I saw him last week but couldn’t identify him at the time.