The league released the complete list of spring training reporting and workout dates yesterday. To see when your rooting interest gets underway, click here.
Pitchers and catchers report as early as February 14th for some teams and as late as February 17th for others. Likewise, full-squad workouts begin as early as February 19th for some teams and as late as February 23rd. But only one team reports on the 23rd: the Twins.
I went to college at a school that was on the quarter system rather than the semester system. As such, I had nearly a month of knocking around my hometown after all my friends went away to college before I got to go. It was kind of a drag, actually. Apart from waiting in line at the record store to buy Guns N’ Roses “Use Your Illusion I and II” the day it came out (on cassette, natch), it was a totally wasted month. I wonder if the Twins position players feel like that.
I also wonder how many of them own “Use Your Illusion I and II” on cassette. Maybe Joe Nathan. He’s the only one about the right age for that.
An interesting tidbit today from The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, who noted that ongoing talks between agent Scott Boras and the Padres have focused more on starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel than slugger Bryce Harper. Earlier this week, there were conflicting reports on the Padres’ level of interest in Harper — MLB Network’s Jon Heyman heard the club had not ruled out another big signing after getting Manny Machado, while Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune talked to multiple sources who believed otherwise — but any agreement between the two is looking unlikelier by the day.
As for Keuchel, Rosenthal cautions that a potential deal is still a “longshot,” especially as the team has other, cheaper options in mind. The 31-year-old southpaw turned down a qualifying offer from the Astros last year and is likely angling for something north of the five-year, $90 million contract extension he rejected from the club in 2016. He’s coming off of another solid performance in Houston, where he went 12-11 in 34 starts with a 3.74 ERA, 2.6 BB/9, 6.7 SO/9, and 3.6 fWAR through 204 2/3 innings in 2018.
While Keuchel has failed to garner substantial interest around the league this offseason, Heyman points out that the Phillies are looking to establish themselves as frontrunners for the lefty — and they’re far less likely to have hang-ups about his asking price, too.