Spring Training has already Sprung

Spring Training’s here and baseball is here again. Sure its only spring training games but its baseball. I enjoy looking at spring game’s box scores and getting overly excited (case in point: Wednesday Josh Bell hits two homers. Overly excited Spring Orange Kool-Aid Verdict: He’ll be the first player enshrined in Cooperstown while still playing). The great thing about the spring games is that you can get overly excited about the players who do great early and will likely be minor bound like Bell and Rhyne Hughes (3 hr already this spring) and completely dismiss bad starts like Kevin Milwood’s start yesterday (0.2 innings, 7 hits, 6 runs). I end up dismissing the bad starts for the same reason (or excuse) as for the hot starts. “The wind down there in Sarasota is insane. A lot of those hits were wind aided. Once it’s the regular season and they’re up in Baltimore it’ll be different.” Of course, a lot of those spring training homers are wind aided too. But isn’t that beside that point?

But its good to have baseball back. There’s a new season here and one that I’m looking forward to. Oh, chances are it’ll be a below .500 year again for our beloved O’s but if a few things break their way, .500 isn’t insane. The outfield, as I and plenty of others have already said, is very young and has a ton of potential, the young pitchers we’ve been pining for are here, the offense looks on paper to be pretty solid, and we have Matt Wieters.

I haven’t post at all lately, so a few things to catch up on.

-Miguel Tejada is back. Who’d thunk it? The Orioles were ready for him to go. He was ready to go. We were ready for him to go. He didn’t want to move to third. The Orioles were wanting to play third…for another team. He wanted to play for a winner. He went to Houston. Now he’s back…playing for the Orioles and third. It’s a one year deal and buys Josh Bell some more time in the minors to develop at a reasonable pace. If Bell keeps doing what he’s doing now and has a spring like the great Markakis spring of a few years, it should make things interesting. Markakis’ rookie spring was only supposed to get his feet wet in the major league camp, get a few a bats, see some major league pitchings, rub some shoulders with the big boys and then go to the minors. He had an awesome spring and there was no justifiable way the O’s could send him down, not even by old crazy Oriole front office logic.

Back to Tejada, it’ll be interesting to see the way he fits back in. Will he happy to just be here after being largely ignored on the open market, caught on the whole incorrect age deal and steroids, and such? How’s that transition to third going to go? It’ll be interesting. I’m over my distain for Miggi. Of course, time and a one year deal can heal some wounds. He definitely won’t be the same player he was while he was in Baltimore. Age and the absence of perhaps other things have diminished his power. Hey, it beats 2009 Melvin Mora. I just hope he hustles out those grounders.

-Mark Hendrickson is back for 2010. It’s the most minor signing that took forever to happen. He wants to be here. The O’s wanted him sorta. No other team really did. He’s here. He has an arm and is decent at best. Will Ohman signed a one year deal. Last season, Ohman was in demand and it was a prolonged farcial process that Ohman took to end up signing with the Dodgers in the middle of the spring. He had a rotten year in LA and logged only 12.1 and a 5.84 ERA in the season that ended quite early to injury. A year later, he’s in Baltimore with a minor league contract. Hooray. Ohman’s career 4.25 ERA should fare well in AL East.

-What’s Spring Training without a Scott Moore update. Quadruple A player de force, Scott Moore is back after missing most of last season with injury. He hit a homer last week and that’s what reminded he was still with the Orioles. I’m sure he’ll have a strong spring, go to Norfolk (backing up Josh Bell), put up some numbers, and put up low numbers in a late season call-up.

Got plenty of other stuff to catch up on, but that’s enough for the moment. Baseball’s back.Hooray.