The Icing on the Cake

Here in Minnesota there is still snow. There may well still be snow the first day of the season. It has happened before. But in Florida and Arizona there is plenty of sun and Spring training is only days away. As a matter of fact, this may be one of the best spring trainings in recent history, not because of all the interesting (and puzzling) moves in the offseason, not because of the steroid spectre hanging over players, and not even to see who will win the annual Coconut Shrimp-eating contest (Livan Hernandez is the favorite at 5:2, but C.C. Sabathia is good money at 1:4 and Prince Fielder is a steal at 1:20).
Not, loyal baseball fans, the reason that this spring will be so great is that, for once, there will be no damn hockey. Free at last, free at last, thank Lord Almighty, free at last. Now if only the NBA could go on strike as well, then ESPN would have nothing to report but college sports and preseason baseball. Think about it. Sunday Night Baseball will not be preempted for NHL playoffs. Not once. Not even for the Stanley Cup. We will finally be able to see all those early season games that let us see how a team is taking shape. The Blue Jays might actually draw a crowd. I know Canadians love their hockey, but the Jays could win them over, if they manage to win a game or two, or sell beer.
There are a million other reasons this season will be fantastic, but for now I'm just thrilled that I won't have to watch a single second of hockey for six months. For that, I'll take all the Jose Canseco's, all the Barry Melrose commentary, hell, all the Joe Buck commentary, in the world.

Stay tuned, predictions, analysis and opinionated articles to follow. Spring Training has begun for the Friendly Confines three man rotation.

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