Spring Training, Pitchers and Catchers, 2/13/2020

Day 2.  I arrived at the Complex at 8:30 AM.  Earlier than the workouts were scheduled to start, but last year the coaches had players out as early as 8:00 AM and sometimes earlier on the half-field in front of Spectrum Field.  A field I used to refer to as Bowa Field, but which I have recently started referring to as Rollins Field.

I have become aware that I have picked up a lot of followers on Twitter.  Some of whom may never have visited the Carpenter Complex.  I’m inserting an overhead photo of the grounds that I edited for readers some years ago.  It shows the layout of the fields I’m talking about.  You should be able to click on it to enlarge depending on your viewing device.

The photo is laid out with north at the top, west on the left.  To the west of Ashburn Field is a grassy area where visitors can park to access the Complex’ four ball fields.  The parking lot below that is fenced in and guarded for Phillies players and staff.  The grassy area just above visitor parking is for the Complex staff.  The grassy area in the upper left corner is where the minor league players park.  And, Bright House Field has been renamed Spectrum Field for Spectrum Communications and should NEVER be referred to as “the Spectrum”.  Never.

I did not have too long to wait for the players to come out.  Activities were moved up to accommodate an afternoon team activity.  That is usually code for golf, but for the non-golfers it could mean fishing.

The activities today were almost exactly the same as those I described in detail yesterday.  They will be the same each day until the first Grapefruit League game.  Forgive me if I cut some of the repetitive corners.

All the pitchers and catchers who were invited have reported.  Little known fact, the players are not required by contract to report until the spring training games start.  So, those who report on the earliest, allowed reporting date have accepted their team’s invitations.

Most of the position players are here.  The invitation date for them is next week.  So, not only are the ones here reporting early for the games, but they have reported before the requested reporting date.  The only guys I haven’t identified yet are Harper, Segura, Martini, and Szczur.  That doesn’t mean they aren’t here, they could be elsewhere within the Complex.  And they weren’t invited for another several days anyway.

The players on the 40-man roster and the 31 non-roster invites (NRIs) change in the Spectrum Field clubhouse.   A lot of their activities happen on Rollins and Ashburn Fields.

A group of pitchers exited the clubhouse and took to the mounds next to Rollins Field.  Nick Pivetta, Ramon Rosso, Ranger Suarez, Adonis Medina, Edgar Garcia and Seranthony Dominguez took turns practicing their throwing motion in drills where the grip the end of a towel in their throwing hand and go through the motion of throwing a pitch.  If done correctly, the free end of the towel snaps in the same spot on or next to their front leg depending on their personal follow through.

While we waited for some action at the Complex, several large groups of players walked from the Complex to the two fields at Joe DiMaggio Park across the street from Spectrum Field.  Approximately left of the grassy area in the lower left-hand corner of the photo above.

The groups consisted of the players who came to Florida in early January on a co-op program where they could workout at the Complex in the morning and work for the Park and Rec in the afternoon, players on rehab, pitchers who reported for the minor league mini-camp, and a little later the position players who reported to minor league mini camp.  These invitations were different.  While I expect it is a good thing to be invited to this mini camp, these are minor leaguers who do not have MLBPA protection, so the word invited is merely a pleasantry.

Those position players who have reported early took the field before 9:30 AM.  They gathered in left field on Ashburn Field where they did their stretching and other exercises.  Then they scattered to their assigned fields for BP.  The assignments were almost exactly the same as yesterday.  I didn’t pay as close attention to observing hitting instructors or the coaches pitching.

  • Ashburn Field
  • Group One – Hoskins, McCutchen, Quinn, Bruce
  • Group Two – Gregorius, Kingery, Torreyes
  • Schmidt Field
  • Group One – Mahtook, Walker, N. Williams, Harrison
  • Group Two – Haseley, Moniak, L. Williams. Forsythe
  • Roberts Field
  • Group One – Bohm, Gosselin, Listi
  • Group Two – Gamboa, Hall, Maton

The differences in the groups were the addition of Jay Bruce to Group One on Ashburn, the addition of Josh Harrison to Group One on Schmidt, and Logan Forsythe moving from Group One to Group Two on Schmidt.

BP always starts with the batter dropping two bunts.  Then they follow a progression that looks like – hit to opposite field on their first round, pull field on their second, up the middle on their third, swing for timing on a couple rounds, and launch on their last round.  I don’t know this as absolute fact, but that’s what it looks like from observation.  Each groups bats for about 15 minutes.

Afterward, the players gathered on two fields for infield practice.  Outfielders disappeared into Spectrum Field for their fielding drills.

Pitchers and catchers took to the field by 10:00 AM.  The catchers and the pitcher who were going to throw bullpens gathered on Schmidt Field.  They had been on Ashburn yesterday.  A check of the groups on all three fields showed they moved in a counter clockwise fashion.  So the guys on Ashburn today will throw bullpens tomorrow.

  • Schmidt Field
  • Alvarez, Arano, Arrieta, Davis, Howard, Jones, Liriano, Morgan, Stock, Velasquez
  • Ashburn Field
  • Dohy, Dominguez, Eflin, Garcia, Gilbert, Guerra, McClain, Norris, Parker, Rosso, Suarez, Warren
  • Carlton Field
  • Hammer, Medina, Nola, Romero, Kelley, Llovera, Russ, Sanchez, Wheeler, Brogdon, Cleavinger, Irvin, Pivetta

Arano and De Los Santos were reported to have sustained injuries (as was Knapp).  I didn’t see Arano throw, nor did I see Howard for that matter.  I did see 8 pitchers throw bullpens.

  • Group One – Alvarez, Arrieta, Davis, Liriano
  • Group Two – Jones, Morgan, Stock, Velasquez

They throw on the Seven Mounds behind the clubhouse.  It’s difficult to get a good vantage point since those mounds are in a restricted area.  I could see that Arrieta threw considerably more pitches than the other pitchers.  Maybe 15 more.

Pitchers, whether throwing or not, completed PFPs on their assigned fields.  These included 1-3, 1-6, 3-1, bunts, pickoffs at 2B, pickoffs at 3B, plays at the plate.  While these plays were going on, a batter’s box had been chalked at second base and another group of pitchers took bunting practice.

After the bullpens, the catchers ran through some fielding drills before before taking BP.  Realmuto, Lartigue, and Grullon on Carlton; Bethancourt, Conley, and others on Roberts.

As I mentioned above, I’ve seen all the position players except for four – Segura, Harper, Martini, and Szczur.  They aren’t due until next week.  And they may be here for all I know.  But, if they aren’t here, 67 of 71 players are.

 

With the beginning of major league camp, the rehabbers, co-ops, and other early reports have diminished to 34 players, and includes –

  • 25 Pitchers – Brandon Ramey, Tyler McKay, Spencer Van Scoyoc, Jaylen Smith, Jake Kinney, Ethan Lindow, Connor Seabold, Bailey Falter, Eudiver Avendano, Luke Leftwich, Kyle Young, Tyler Hallead, Ben Brown, Lizardo Herrera, Sandro Rosario, Trevor Bettencourt, Brian Auerbach, Carlos Francisco (WPT), Josh Tols, Robinson Martinez, Jose Jimenez, Nick Fanti, Nicoly Pina, Tyler Carr, Andrew Brown
  • 2 Catchers -Edgar Cabral, Rodolfo Duran
  • 4 Infielders – Jamari Baylor, Luis Garcia, T.J. Rivera, Grenny Cumana
  • 3 Outfielders – Carlos De La Cruz, Jose Pujols, Oduble Herrera,

Most of the above are rehabbing.  They were joined by a slew of players who will take part in their minor league mini camp.  Around 40 players went through physicals today.  I recognized about 2 dozen.  But can only remember a handful – Eastman, Ross, Ortiz, Hennigan, McGarry, Stephen, Morales.

If we avoid some rain that is forecast, I hope to identify more of the mini-campers tomorrow.

Spring training practice was completed by 11:20 AM.

 

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