There are a lot of wonderful things about the Grapefruit League. Watching baseball in February in shorts and a t-shirt while the rest of the country is freezing is certainly high on the list. Watching major leaguers play in a small venue is like watching your favorite band perform in a small club instead of a stadium.
You also get to see your favorite players relaxed and stress free as they seem to be playing just for the love of the game. But also you see players that you may never see again. Who is Thornton? I don’t know. He didn’t make the team, isn’t on the Pirates roster. But we watched him pitch two innings in Bradenton and he certainly looked good doing it. Hope he makes it to the show some day, just because.
No player has done more to help raise the Pittsburgh Pirates from the cellar than #22 Andrew McCutchen. Roberto Clemente wore number 21 and that number has been retired. I remember when Clemente was young and he lived next door to my parents in the Chatham West Garden Apartments in Pittsburgh. Clemente had this beautiful swing, even watching him hit foul balls was fun. Well, maybe not so much for the pitchers. McCutchen is the same. He looks beautiful hitting foul balls or in this case a home run as he did here against the Yankees in February.
This is part of a series of three images taken during the Black and Gold Game in Bradenton Florida last month.It was great to see the expressions change during this short discussion about a missed catch in right field. It and some other sequences that I have captured have made me think of a potential book or gallery project called “Trips”. It would be an odd size book so maybe better as a gallery installation but I am way ahead of myself. I am still editing my novel and no other book project will happen ahead of “DreamMap”
Spring comes early in Central Florida. Flowers bloom, temperature rise and trees leaf out. However, the real harbinger of Spring is when the boys start to play baseball.
The Black and Gold game is a seven inning inter squad exhibition game. It was a little confusing because both teams wore the same uniforms. McKechnie Field in Bradenton is a cute little stadium and being so close to the action was thrilling.