Spring training is officially underway. There are 32 pitchers and six catchers currently in camp. Additionally, several position players; including Justin Turner, Corey Seager and Joc Pederson, have also arrived ahead of their Tuesday reporting date. In other news, Yasiel Puig is also at Camelback Ranch and he brought a little friend, per Doug Padilla at ESPN:
Yasiel Puig has arrived in Dodgers camp, bringing with him a baseball bat wrapped in barbed wire, housed in a wood box with "The Walking Dead" stamped on the outside. Spring training now has begun.I suppose Puig is hoping to unleash his inner beast -- just like Negan.
Photo above of Dave Roberts first team meeting of Spring, via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2017. Go here to check out more great pics from Jon SooHoo of the Dodgers first workout yesterday. Below are more links to check out:
- Happy Birthday, Ed Brandt, Ike Boone, Rod Dedeaux (also the longtime USC Baseball manager), Ed Chandler & Roger Craig!
- Video: Alanna Rizzo catches up with Clayton Kershaw on the first day of Spring Training. Plus, get Orel Hershiser’s thoughts on Kershaw’s first bullpen session. (Video Link)
- Audio: Orel Hershisher joined Petros and Money on Wednesday to discuss Clayton Kershaw's health, outlook in the outfield and who could fill the final two slots in the starting rotation. (Audio Link)
- Oh, come on now. Via Phil Gurnee at Dodgers, Yesterday and Today; "Will Trump’s State Dept handle Baseball Visa’s in time?"
- Per Bill Plunkett at the OC Register; "Dodgers' Hyun-Jin Ryu 'needs to perform' to prove he has made it back from surgeries."
“I think from the video and what I’ve seen from years ago when he was healthy, there’s a certain extension,” Roberts said before Ryu’s throwing session Thursday. “I think with any pitcher when you start coming off an injury and you don’t get that extension, you’re protecting your arm. I think early this winter, one of his first couple ‘pens that he threw, there wasn’t that extension that we liked. The last one he threw there was that extension. So that’s a good thing.
“For me, that extension, the repeatability of his mechanics is something that I’m going to be looking for.”
- Per Lee Hsin-Yin at Focus Taiwan; "Emirates plane with LA Dodgers livery to make flight to Taiwan." On the right is a pic of the Emirates Dodger plane.
- Via Ken Gurnick at MLB.com; "Maeda adds muscle, sets sights on 200 innings."
He's gained 10 pounds of muscle in the past year, thanks to a revamped conditioning and nutrition plan, and is working tirelessly on grips for a cutter he's added to his pitch repertoire.
- It appears that Darin Ruf's time as a Dodger will be short. Per Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors; "Dodgers Sell Contract Of Darin Ruf To KBO’s Samsung Lions." Ruf will make $1.1 million playing in Korea.
- Naturally, with the coming of spring Baseball Topps has to commemorate the occasion by releasing their first 2017 Topps Now cards for the collecting public. They are dubbed the "Road to Opening Day" cards and each team in the league has their own 15-card team set at $49.99. Furthermore, the set can expand in size based on the success of the team over the regular season. Go here for more details or to order. Unfortunately, pics of the Dodger cards are not yet available. There is also an autograph team set option available that includes all the same cards described previously plus a mystery autograph card. Go here to check that out.
- This weeks Topps "Throwback Thursday" online exclusive card set includes Jackie Robinson and five other fellow Hall of Famers on a 1957-58 Topps Basketball card design. Go here to check it out and order.
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