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Spring Training

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"People who write about spring training not being necessary have never tried to throw a baseball." - Sandy Koufax

Spring training is a period of time from mid-February to the late March or early April when players get in shape for the season. Currently, all 30 major league teams either train in Florida (the Grapefruit League) or Arizona (the Cactus League). World War II travel restrictions led to teams training very close to home with the Boston Red Sox using Medford, MA, Indiana and Maryland were also popular training spots for teams during the war years. After the end of World War II, spring training locations were spread out across the southern half of the country, with towns such as San Antonio, TX and Hot Springs, AR, being popular venues.

During spring training, young players get to prove themselves worthy for the major leagues and many veterans choose to retire rather than take a demotion to the bench or AAA. It is considered a time of hope as every team has a chance of a good season during spring training.

Contents

[edit] Current Spring Training Sites

[edit] Florida (Grapefruit League)

[edit] Arizona (Cactus League)

[edit] Further Reading

  • Thomas Boswell: "The Season of Sweet Boredom", in How Life Imitates the World Series, Penguin Books, New York, 1982, pp. 44-49.
  • Frank Jackson: "Crossing Red River: Spring Training in Texas", in The National Pastime - A Review of Baseball History, Society for American Baseball Research, Cleveland, OH, number 26 (May, 2006), pp. 85-91.
  • Josh Pahigian: Spring Training Handbook: A Comprehensive Guide to the Ballparks of the Grapefruit and Cactus Leagues, McFarland, Jefferson, NC, 2013 (originally published in 2005). ISBN 978-0-7864-7195-9
  • William F. Ross III: "Spring Training in Georgia: the Yannigans Are Coming!", in Baseball in the Peach State, The National Pastime, SABR, Volume 40 (2010), pp. 115-122.
  • Ozzie Sweet: The Boys of Spring: Iconic Images from the Grapefruit League 1948-2004, SportClassic Books, 2005.
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