Every single team is 0-0. Mathematically speaking, every team has the same chance to win the World Series. Prospects see this as a chance to prove their worth, veterans plan their workouts around their tee times. Championships are to be won, the question is which team will be the victor?
With pitchers and catchers reporting this week, it is important to think about what this actually symbolizes. I know, we’re getting a little deep in this post. Stay with me folks. Seriously though, this represents hope. Every fan is filled with optimism at this point. Sure a lot are angry that almost no free agents have signed. Fans are angry with their front office with moves made in the offseason, some much more than others. I am sorry Marlins fans, I truly hope it will get better for you. On the flip side, this is a very exciting time for fans of teams full of prospects. Young stars will tear up Spring Training and everyone will scream they should start the year on the big league squad. No they should not, they still need to develop a bit. Trust me. Through it all, every fan truly believes that this season will go better than they expect.
Pitchers and catchers reporting for a lot of us gives us a glimpse into warmer weather. While some of the country is buried in snow and dealing with negative degrees, they at least get to see their prized prospect pitcher reporting to camp. Pitchers and catchers reporting is a literal light at the end of the tunnel for those braving through winter weather. The exit for spring is near, almost time to jump off this highway of winter my friends.
Going into this season there are A LOT of questions. The first one being, when the hell are these free agents going to actually sign? Are they really going to go to a separate Spring Training facility as stated? It is a very bizarre time for most baseball fans as usually by this point most teams are pretty much finalized. There are a few spots to be won but usually the premier players are supporting their team colors.
Another thing that everyone LOVES about Spring Training is the players who report in the “best shape of their life”. It happens every year. Certain players spend SOOOO much more time than everyone else getting in shape that they are now in the “best shape of their life”. These players are poised to breakout of whatever funk they were in. Watch out people! (Yes, Kyle Schwarber is that person this year. He is going to be an absolute monster, I don’t care what I just sarcastically wrote about people showing up in the “best shape of their life”. Look out MLB, you have been warned.)
Some of the main questions of the year are how many homeruns will the Yankees hit? When will the courting of Bryce Harper begin? When will we get a look at the can’t miss prospects of the White Sox? Will the Astros have a World Series hangover similar to the 2016 Cubs? Speaking of the Cubs, how will Yu Darvish fare on the North Side? WHEN WILL ALL THE DAMN FREE AGENTS SIGN? Will we see another year full of homeruns? Will Shohei Ohtani pitch and play the field? Can the Mets rotation finally stay healthy?
I could go on and on about what will come of this MLB season. I for one am excited. As a life long Cubs fan, Spring Training always bred hope. I always thought this was the year, until finally it was. Enjoy these months of optimism baseball fans, because in a few months reality will hit and you’ll realize your team didn’t make enough moves to catch the Cubs in the NL Central anyways.
Better times are here, winter is almost over, and spring is near. Hope springs eternal folks, hope springs eternal.