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Well it’s official. Baseball season is underway. I’ve been down in Port St. Lucie for the last two weeks or so and yesterday, we actually had our first game. We played a bunch of minor leaguers from the Astros who made the trip down from Kissimmee. It’s always good to get that first game under your belt. It’s even better when you get a win. With the help of Dillon Gee – who was getting some extra work in a minor league game – we shut out Houston’s minor leaguers playing as the Lexington Legends, 7-0. Until the big league team starts making some more cuts, we are actually playing as the Savannah Sand Gnats, but will obviously eventually become the Cyclones.
I happened to catch some parts of another one of the minor league games where a bunch of the guys who played on Coney Island last year were playing for the St. Lucie squad. Cory Vaughn went 1-2 and Darrell Ceciliani went 1-3, which seems to have bee the norm last year, and Yohan Almonte and Angel Cuan pitched the team to a 5-2 win. So I guess you could say, so far, so good.
For those of you who have never been down to the Mets complex in Port St. Lucie, it is top of the line. The major league club plays over at Digital Domain Park, that’s the same field that our affiliate in the Florida State League uses during the season. But behind the walls of the big field is a minor league complex unlike any other I have ever seen. One of the practice fields has the same dimensions as Citi Field up in Queens - it even was the same nooks and crannies along the outfield wall. That is where the minor league guys typically scrimmage. Then there are a couple other full sized fields where we practice every morning, and a hand full of half-fields where we can do group work with infielders or pitchers, maybe work on base running or bunting. Stuff like that. Plus there’s locker rooms for all the clubs from Triple-A Buffalo, on down, and a cafeteria that serves up three meals a day for all of the players and coaches.
My favorite part of camp so far has been getting to spend time with the coaching staff that we will have up in Brooklyn. Frank Viola, Bobby Malek and myself have been together for a couple of weeks, but I feel like we’ve been working together for the last 15 years. But we know that’s not true because Bobby was still in diapers back then (Just kidding Bobby).
Well keep checking back at BrooklynCyclones.com for more updates from Port St. Lucie. I will try to post an update every week or so.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone, and can’t wait to see you up in Brooklyn!