First off, the Rockies new spring training facility is awesome. Just a beautiful place for players and fans alike. Although the name, "Salt River Fields at Talking Stick" is a bit of a mouthful.
It was nice to see a Major League game in person again since the last time was the end of last season. The winter just drags on and on.
Today's game against the Angels had a post-season feel to it. No, not because of the game. It was a meaningless exhibition...meaningless except if you are fringe player trying to make the team. It felt like October baseball because of the cold temperatures.
It was 54 degrees at game time. Freezing cold for Arizona. I talked to a couple of local folks and they said it was rare for it to be this cold especially when it has been in the 80's the last several weeks. Add the stiff breezes and with the wind chill factor it felt about 37-degrees below zero.
It was nice to see some of the players again. Talked a bit with the Rockies classy manager Jim Tracy. I find it refreshing and somewhat remarkable that Tracy remembers everyone's name, even mine. Meanwhile I find it humorous that Troy Tulowitzki always looks at me as if it is the first time he's ever see or talked to me. Tulo is always polite and I'm guessing he has better things to do than remember who I am.
Also had a chance to talk to newcomers Michael Cuddyer and Marco Scutaro. Both quality veterans who will help the team. I reminded Scutaro about a walk-off home run he hit against Mariano Rivera to win a game for the Athletics several years back. Scutaro admitted he was somewhat shocked, especially since it was an 0-2 count. I remember the game being on a Sunday in Oakland...since I had a fit over it that night on our sports show.
It was also nice see some media friends, especially Thomas Harding, from MLB.com.
Thomas lost his son over the winter. Very sad story. He said he's hanging in there. That's all you can do.
Baseball is back and for me a little earlier than usual. Thank goodness for that.