Baseball is coming.
Three days until Pitchers and Catchers report. Fifteen days until exhibition games begin. Fifty days until Opening Day.
But only 28 days before I’m in Florida myself. Four short weeks before I soak in the sun, splendor and hope of a new season.
While the games are nice (and are your only chance to see the major leaguers in action) the real fun for this fan is
down the road at Pirate City. Get there between 10 and 11- maybe earlier if it looks like there will be afternoon rain. You’ll be immersed in baseball action, with four fields of hitting, pitching and fielding all withing sight of one another. Bring a media guide, or Tim’s book, because the players won’t have names on their jerseys. Also keep your eyes up and your ears open because you could be watching one field and get hit by a foul ball hit from another one.
The picture above was taken with my phone, standing right at the backstop. This is how close you get to the action at Pirate City. Closer than at the exhibition games, and way closer than a regular season game.
So if you’re a fan and have never been to Spring Training for your team, do yourself a big favor and book it. But while you’re there, don’t just see the big leaguers. Stop by the practice field while the minor leaguers are playing too. Its totally worth it.
Editor’s note: After some feedback I rewrote parts of this post for clarity.