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A pleasant day at Goodyear

Mar 6, 2013, 4:42 PM EDT

It’s been a nice day so far at Goodyear. After talking to Nick Swisher, Jason Giambi, Terry Francona and after watching and pretending to scout Scott Kazmir, I feel like it’s a good time to stop being a reporter and mostly just gawk. So I’m gawking.

Bad news about Goodyear Park? The press box is impossibly small. Like, there’s room for the home writers, the team PR people, the MLB and scorer people and, like, three visiting scribes. That crowds me out. The good news: for the second straight year the Indians staff let me set up in a luxury box just down the way from the press box. My view:

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It’s way better too. I’m out on the patio in the open air with just as good a view as the press box types but with way better atmosphere.  Last year I caught a foul ball up here. It’s the bottom of the fifth as I’m writing this and no luck yet, but I’m hopeful. And if I do get one, there is no Jonah Keri here this year to guilt me into giving it to a kid. It’s minemineminemine.

The game so far: 2-0 Indians beating the Dodgers. It’s pretty inconsequential, though. It’s a split squad Dodgers team and, really, not much drama is going down with this Tribe team at the moment. It’s a far more chill day than is even typical for spring training. The highlight so far: Don Mattingly — who you can see in the dugout in the picture above — stood up an inning or two ago, attempted to put his lineup card in his back pocket, tried again, and again, and again, and again, and kept missing his pocket. So he threw it on the floor.

This guy:

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Amazingly not a scout.  I thought he might have been, as he was watching the Kazmir thing earlier and, well, looks like how I imagine all scouts looking.  Nope. Just a guy “who likes a lot of baseball” he told me. His name is Carl. He goes out to a different complex every day and just hangs around until he feels like getting lunch, he says. I want to be Carl when I grow up. He’s really cool.

Just outside the Indians’ clubhouse: Phiten necklaces, marked down!

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This is how it was with Poison albums just after Nirvana hit big.  Speaking of big:

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Love this thing. If Cheech and Chong made a baseball movie this would be a central plot point, methinks.  And now from the comedic to the absurd:

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In between the first and second inning some trainer people jumped onto the dugout and did a “90 second workout” for the crowd. They actually expected everyone to get up and exercise. They yelled things like “C’mon! You’re not gonna work off those beers just sitting there! Now 1! And 2! And stretch! And move!”

Their bodies were never discovered and there are no suspects.

  1. Kevin Gillman - Mar 6, 2013 at 5:07 PM

    I just heard you on “All Bets Are Off With Bruce Drennan” too. I’d like to make it to Goodyear one year, and see the Indians in spring training. So you’d recommend the stadium?

    • Craig Calcaterra - Mar 6, 2013 at 5:44 PM

      It’s a nice place. Some are nicer, but here there are a lot of opportunities over at the training complex down the road for fans to get up close and personal with players and stuff. Good times if you’re an Indians/Reds fan.

  2. historiophiliac - Mar 6, 2013 at 5:24 PM

    Is this spring training or the Craig-stalking-old-men-at-parks tour?

    • Craig Calcaterra - Mar 6, 2013 at 5:44 PM

      That’s always, right?

      • historiophiliac - Mar 6, 2013 at 5:45 PM

        It’s good to scout your future.

      • jcmeyer10 - Mar 7, 2013 at 1:08 PM

        It’s when he asks for a bucket hat like that, that we know it’s the beginning of the end for Craig.

    • wlschneider09 - Mar 7, 2013 at 9:42 AM

      It’s Arizona and/or Florida. There’s a fair number of old men with time on their hands.

      • azvikefan - Mar 7, 2013 at 10:24 AM

        Craig, I aim to be like Carl too. I’m closer than you are to it. I live in Phoenix so I will stay through spring training then head up to Minnesota each April. That’s my plan anyway.

  3. qcubed3 - Mar 6, 2013 at 6:07 PM

    Where are the pictures of the baseball statue’s mascot? And yes, there most certainly is one!

  4. takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Mar 6, 2013 at 8:12 PM

    Been thinking of taking a trip out there. How bad, if at all,was the noise from the adjacent airport, Craig?

    • adcoop22 - Mar 6, 2013 at 8:36 PM

      There are rarely any planes coming into the airport, it is mostly set up to remodel used planes that are then sent over seas. You might spot the Goodyear/Metlife blimp out there on occasion however.

      I live about 5 minutes from the stadium and frequent the adjacent Walmart, I have seen countless players there, it may be almost as much fun to go to the store and talk to random minor leaguers.

      In related news, I randomly had a round of golf with a starting pitcher for the Brewers last Friday. He had no chance of throwing that afternoon and took the day off to hit the links, while the idiot behind him (me) almost hit him with a longer-than-expected drive. We ended up finishing the round together. This is why I love March in AZ.

    • theuncletodd - Mar 6, 2013 at 8:36 PM

      there isn’t an airport–it’s an airplane graveyard where planes go to die and get cannabilized

  5. janessa31888 - Mar 7, 2013 at 7:38 AM

    Those pictures make this Indians fan long for summer. Really enjoy these spring training reports.

  6. bigmacmantle - Mar 7, 2013 at 7:05 PM

    Are you sure it wasn’t something like “C’mon! You’re not gonna get your LDL-P in line just eating that paleo diet! Now 1! And 2! And stretch! And move!”

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