Pitchers and Bird Dogs Report to Spring Training
Tuesday marked the first three games of the 2010 Spring Training season. In the spirit of Grapefruit and Cactus League baseball, I’d like to offer my thoughts on what bird dogs fit each of the nine positions on the baseball field. Yes, it’s a bit of a mind-bender, but I think you’ll enjoy the hotbox.
Around the Horn
Pitcher: Labrador retriever – They are all GO for the first seven innings and always want to be at the center of the action. Examples: Curt Schilling, Justin Verlander, CC Sabathia, and Jack Morris.
Catcher: Chesapeake Bay Retriever – Tough as nails and able to fight through bruises and bad weather. Examples: Lance Parrish, Carlton Fisk, and Gary Carter.
1st Baseman: Cocker Spaniel – This guy is all hit and no range. Lacks speed on the paths, but capable of going yard. Examples: Eddie Murray, Miguel Cabrera, Steve Garvey, and Lance Berman.
2nd Baseman: Brittany – This rangy midfielder covers a lot of ground in quick bursts and vacuums up grounders and grouse like a Hoover. However, they often have prima donna tendencies. Examples: Roberto Alomar, Jeff Kent, and Joe Morgan.
3rd Baseman: Weimaraner – Capable of putting the team on his back and carrying it for an extended period of clutch hitting, this grizzled veteran is often ornery. Not a player you want to get crossways with in the locker room. Examples: Mike Schmidt, George Brett, and A-Rod.
Shortstop: German shorthaired pointer – Typically the best athlete on the team, a shortstop blends speed with quickness and a strong arm, but leadership as the field general sets most apart from the rest of the dog pack. Examples: Alan Trammell, Derek Jeter, Robin Yount, and Cal Ripken Jr.
Left Fielder: Springer spaniel – A serviceable fielder, but the real value is at the plate where the fastballs are sniffed out and driven for doubles. Examples: Stan Musial, Carl Yastrzemski, and Ryan Braun.
Center Fielder: German wirehaired pointer – Lots of run and range, but not the strongest of arms. Often has blazing speed on the bases and a legitimate hitter for power with average. Examples: Ken Griffey Jr., Torii Hunter, and Curtis Granderson.
Right Fielder: Golden retriever – Despite consistently picked last, this player is often a fan favorite. Typically possessing a strong arm, he is usually a powerful homerun hitter, but does have a propensity to strikeout as well. Examples: Hank Aaron, Reggie Jackson, Kirk Gibson, and Al Kaline.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on what breed would make a solid middle reliever, pinch runner, closer, and designated hitter. Remember . . . don’t take it all too seriously, it’s just a spring training game.
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