The wait is over! The gates of Joker Marchant Stadium unlocked, and spring training is now officially underway.
The annual exhibition against Florida Southern is always a fun game. The rain held off, and despite hurricane-like winds, a good time was had by all.
Rather than spoon-feed the box scores to you, I thought I would share some useless random observations of mine from today's game.
* Third baseman Colin Kaline (grandson of Al Kaline) went 2-for-3 with a walk for the Mocs.
* Tyler Benzel of Fla. Southern jokingly proceeded to charge the mound after being hit by a pitch from Joel Zumaya in the seventh inning. The little fellow then shook hands with Zumaya as they both laughed it off about halfway to the mound.
* Brennan Boesch was forced to leave the game after being hit in the face with a fly ball. He was 2-for-2 on the day with two runs scored and one error. Seriously, how do you give the guy an error when he gets hit in the face with a fly ball?
* Casper Wells hit a three-run home run and looked pretty solid in the outfield. At some point this season, Wells will be called up—he's that good.
* Ryan Strieby went 2-for-2 with three RBI and three runs scored. The kid is a beast! The only problem I have with this is that they are not letting him play the outfield. I think first base is spoken for for a few years (note sarcasm). Why not use this spring to try the kid elsewhere on the diamond?
* Brandon Inge did not play...that’s always a good day in my book! In related news, I wore my CRINGE t-shirt to the game.
* Cody Satterwhite did struggle with command early on, and his numbers did not look pretty on the day. HOWEVER, keep in mind that he was shut down early last season due to a lingering injury. I would chalk today's performance up as “just one of those days.” He settled down and gave fans a glimpse of who he really is, striking out the final batter and leaving the bases loaded.
All right, I will be back in Lakeland Thursday through Monday with more detailed daily reports once Grapefruit League action begins.
*Stay Classy Tiger Nation