Spring Training 2013: Day 2 Recap

Hands down the best part of spring training is seeing all of our former players. I’ve now been through three full seasons as Media Relations Manager, which means about 25 players per year for a total of around 75. Granted, many have been released (an unfortunate truth in minor league baseball), but each spring that I come to Kissimmee, it seems like I say hello and shake hands every corner I turn.

Two of them include Catfish Elkins and Dan Gulbransen, the “It’s Gatorade” dynamic duo. (See video…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SLhNJOX_ccA).


Today I spent the majority of my time over at the major league side, as the Astros were hosting the St. Louis Cardinals. Former ‘Cats pitching coach Gary Ruby and ‘Cats 2013 manager Ed Romero, were both on the bench. Ruby handled the pitching coach duties and Romero exchanged lineup cards. Meanwhile the Astros coaching staff was on the minor league side for the Class A games. (Minus Bo Porter, who did manage the major league game).

This was an idea Porter came up with in order to get the major league coaching staff more familiar with the minor leaguers. They don’t get to see much of them in action because most of the time the games are going on simultaneously.

Former ‘Cat Bud Norris was on the mound for the Astros in his last spring start before Opening Night on March 31. Norris will toe the rubber in front of a national television audience on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball, as the Astros host the Texas Rangers to kick-off the 2013 MLB season.

Out of today’s nine starters, five were former ValleyCats. Norris on the mound, Castro catching, Altuve at second base, Barnes in left and J.D. Martinez in right. It’s great to see!

Below is my day in photographs. I must mention that longtime ValleyCats usher and valued employee Dan Carubia, spent the day with me at the complex and it was a pleasure to show him around. He is also a very talented photographer and took many great photos during the day. I will post them as soon as I’m able to.

Here’s Dan taking some photos during the major league game:


Below is my day in photos. Stay tuned for the next recap tomorrow night!



Bud Norris warms up with Jason Castro




Manager Bo Porter speaks with the position players following the half inning.



Jose Altuve



Lance Day throwing to Cristian Moronta on the minor league side.

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