The Blue and Gold

Spring Training 2018

Camelback Ranch, home to the LA Dodgers and the Chicago White Sox, located in Glendale of Phoenix, Arizona

Matthew Rich, Author

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Now that football season is over, it is time to transition to baseball. Spring Training in Major League Baseball (MLB) is when teams play during the offseason in stadiums other than their usual ones. Most of the stadiums used in Spring Training are currently Minor League Baseball (MiLB) stadiums or old MiLB stadiums. Spring Training became well-known in the 1890’s, and by 1910 grew in popularity, becoming a spring vacation destination for baseball lovers. Hot Springs, Arkansas is known as the birthplace of Spring Training, the location where the Chicago White Stockings (now the Chicago Cubs) began to practice for their upcoming season. Other teams were inspired by this idea, setting up practice leagues in preparation for the regular season, starting a tradition now widely known as Spring Training.

Spring Training is not only a chance for baseball pro’s to practice their skills, but also a time for rookies to prove they are worthy of being placed on the team’s starting lineup, or just move up to the MLB from the MiLB. Spring Training takes place during the months of February and March, four months after the World Series. There are currently two leagues in MLB Spring Training, the Cactus League and the Grapefruit League. Located in Arizona and Florida, Spring Training is a chance for baseball enthusiasts to go to a warmer climate and enjoy baseball.

The Arizona Cactus League consists of 15 teams: the Diamondbacks, the Cubs, the White Sox, the Reds, the Indians, the Rockies, the Royals, the Mariners, the Giants, the Dodgers, the Angels, the Brewers, the A’s, the Padres, and the Rangers.

The Florida Grapefruit League also has 15 teams: the Braves, the Orioles, the Nationals, the Yankees, the Tigers, the Red Sox, the Phillies, the Pirates, the Cardinals, the Rays, the Blue Jays, the Mets, the Twins, the Marlins, the Astros, and the Tigers.

Spring Training is a prime time for loyal fans to get their favorite players’ autographs, as well as tour the attractions near the stadiums.

The San Francisco Giants play at Scottsdale Stadium in Scottsdale, Arizona. The stadium offers passes that allows fans on field during practice. While the passes are expensive, the people who purchase them get to have a close up experience and get all of their merchandise signed by their favorite players before they head into the dugout. The stadium has a capacity of around 12,000 seats, and even more space for seating on the lawn, an area perfect for retrieving home run balls.

Will any of you baseball enthusiasts go to Spring Training to watch your favorite team’s current legends or their upcoming ones?

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