Re: Dumb Question: What Exactly is "Extended Spring Training"?
To piggy back Doug's answer…
It consists of the players that are not game ready for full season ball yet. It can consist of injured MiL or MLB players, but mostly a lot of Dominican’s, Venezuelan’s, and last year’s high school and JUCO draft class.
It is pretty much all about workouts and games. The workouts are just what you would imagine, basic fundamentals. So many of these kids are so raw that being in the right place for cut-offs is hard, or OF’ers one hopping catchers on plays at the plate, and a lot of PFP (pitchers fielding practice). Pitchers are learning to build up arm strength, and hitters are practicing fundamentals.
The games aren’t reported much for a few reasons. One, the rules are extremely lax. If your starting pitcher goes out and walks the first four batters on 20 pitches, the manager usually “rolls” the inning. Which means the inning is over once they hit their pitch count and don’t want to make a sub. I’d say at least one inning gets rolled a game. This means the score is meaningless. You never see big innings in Ext. spring because of this.
Big league hitters will come down and bat every inning in games. I was at a game when A-Rod was rehabbing and he led off every inning. Another game had Jose Tabata rehabbing his hamstring and he wouldn’t run after hitting the ball. He drilled a liner off the wall in one AB, and just walked off the field because he was just getting his timing down.
In FL, you only play teams in your division. So take the Phillies (Clearwater), they only play the Pirates (Bradenton), Blue Jays (Dunedin), Braves (Orlando), Yankees (Tampa). This was the same for the GCL division. You get to know those guys really well.
You also learn how to apply sun screen and visit a dermatologist yearly.
That’s all I got for now.