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The gang's all here

Livo locker.jpg

That there is a locker inside Space Coast Stadium belonging to Livan Hernandez, who is scheduled to report later this morning along with the rest of the Washington Nationals for the first full-squad workouts of 2010. There promises to be a much more focused, upbeat feel to these practices than last year, for reasons pertaining to both talent and a refreshing dearth of federal investigations.

This spring, like any other, will also include timeless elements, like players at both ends of their careers trying to make the team -- in the coming days, Drew Storen will likely find himself throwing next to Hernandez, who threw his first big league pitch when Storen was 9. You will also see players trying to find out where they fit in.

Around the Natosphere, Stan Kasten previews the speech he'll give players today by saying, "the days of accepting excuses are way behind us. We have to expect to win." Catcher Derek Norris has been settling into his big-league camp. Some still wonder about Jim Riggleman's handling of Kerry Wood and his look back at it this year. Others are plain fascinated by Livo's crazy consistency.

In his first camp with the Pirates, Lastings Milledge says, "I brought a lot of stuff on myself with previous organizations. I didn't take the game very seriously. Once I got traded here, it was a clean slate." Riggleman yesterday answered some questions on ESPN Radio. Boz was chatting away, too. Then there's still the position battle (almost) no one is talking about -- The Bobblehead Fan Vote.

By Adam Kilgore  |  February 26, 2010; 8:32 AM ET
 | Tags: drew storen, jim riggleman, livan hernandez, spring training, stan kasten  
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Comments

Eh, new-posted. Thanks for all the morning readings.

So, you couldn't sneak a peek at what's inside the locker? After all, the key's right there. Just kidding. And there's probably nothing in there yet, anyway. :-)

Tough choice on the bobble front. I'd like to see them offer both a starting bobble and a backup, but I don't think that's in the cards.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | February 26, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Question: Do MLB teams running academies in foriegn lands generally provide educational services beyond baseball fundamentals and experience. Specifically, do they offer the 3'R's - Reading, 'riting, & 'rithmatic. How about English language? Seminars on media relations, immigration, living in the USA?

And of course specifically are the Nats offering any of these services. And to what degree do offering or not offering these services improve the chance of signing players to the academies? I don't expect community college level course work, but almost certainly some of these "students" are unfinished with their education when they sign. Do they attend local schools and practice/play around those schedules? How does that work?

Posted by: natbiscuits | February 26, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

"Stan Kasten previews the speech he'll give players today by saying, 'the days of accepting excuses are way behind us. We have to expect to win.'"

Rich. Stan is the KING of making excuses for the club's lousy performance on and off the field and he's going to deliver some big speech to the players stating the most obvious thing in sport for any team at any level above T Ball "play to win"? I am sure the players will be very inspired. Maybe he should deliver the play to win speech to his bosses.

Posted by: dfh21 | February 26, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

biscuits - I've visited several academies in the DR just for fun. Yes, they focus on preparing the kids for success in the USA. So this includes english, nutrition, weight training, MiLB and MLB rules and regulations, etc.
Typically, they do not attend local schools, as they have finished school by the time they enter the academy. The goal is to address not just the baseball side of being successful, but all aspects of what it takes to go from a foreign land to playing MLB.

Posted by: Sunderland | February 26, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Seems like a good place to mention the movie Sugar ( www.imdb.com/title/tt0990413/ ). Sunderland, was it you who recommended it a few months ago?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | February 26, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Guy things.
*********
So, you couldn't sneak a peek at what's inside the locker? After all, the key's right there. Just kidding. And there's probably nothing in there yet, anyway. :-)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | February 26, 2010 8:57 AM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | February 26, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

I recently viewed this one after having it in my Netflix queue for some time. Both my husband and I enjoyed it.

---

Seems like a good place to mention the movie Sugar ( www.imdb.com/title/tt0990413/ ). Sunderland, was it you who recommended it a few months ago?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | February 26, 2010 9:39 AM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | February 26, 2010 10:02 AM | Report abuse

Tracee had a blog item on it back in the day, and there was a review in the Post as well.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/nationalsjournal/2009/05/_jim_caple_has_a.html

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | February 26, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

And while I'm at it, another recent Netflix rental that I enjoyed was "Gift of the Game," featuring novelist Randy White and pitchers Jon Warden and Bill Lee. The group travels to Cuba to find and revive the children's baseball league founded by Ernest Hemingway.

On a related note, and my final movie comment for now, if you like the above-mentioned movie, you'll likely also enjoy "Spaceman: A Baseball Odyssey," which also deals with Bill Lee and a Cuban trip.

Okay, I'm done now, but sec3 started it. :-)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | February 26, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Almost done. Before you go on to the New Post already, congratulate the people of the Dominican Republic as they celebrate the 166th anniversary of their independence on February 27.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | February 26, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Bummer to see that Hanrahan's had problems lately. Never wished anything but the best for that guy.

Vote Rizzo for the bobblehead. :o)

Posted by: dand187 | February 26, 2010 10:42 AM | Report abuse

OMG, LMAO.

refreshing dearth of federal investigations? LOL!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: NatsNut | February 26, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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