Plea For Spring Training: Why Must We Watch?

Gabriel EarnestContributor IMarch 6, 2010

TAMPA, FL - MARCH 5: Pitchers A. J. Burnett #34 and CC Sabathia  #52 of the New York Yankees walk to the dugout before play  against the Tampa Bay Rays March 5, 2010 at the George M. Steinbrenner  Field in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Ahhh, its that time of year again. A time of year where fans fill miniature stadiums in Florida and Arizona to watch their favorite teams. Its Spring Training time!

Many fans watch Spring Training just to get to the season opener. They argue that Spring Training does not matter and that the only time to look forward to is that fateful first week of April. While the stats and records don't matter and a ultimately unofficial in Spring Training, the season serves a purpose. 

The Spring Training season allows for new player prospects to show off their talents in a semi-competitive environment and for current players to practice when it really does not matter. 

Spring Training also gives fans the chance to see their team in an intimate setting. The average size of a Spring Training venue is 8000 seats and this allows fans to be closer to the game without breaking their budget. The ballpark experience at a Spring Training venue is reminiscent to the ballparks of baseball's first days. 

Its not just the players that practice and warm up during spring training, its also the fans. Spring Training gives fans the opportunity to get pumped up about the regular season and get the rivalries sizzling. 

So, while it may not be on TV and it may not make Sports Center every day, Spring Training is more important than most might think. So fans, go to Florida and Arizona and follow your teams in the bright, warm spring sun.