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Pitchers and catchers!

Posted by Amalie Benjamin  February 16, 2007 03:59 PM

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I know you are all clamoring for more blogging. And, finally, I'm here to give it to you!

The wireless was down most of the day at the complex, so I'm back in my hotel room, ready to write my story for the paper, and ready to give you a few more tidbits from the day that you were waiting for all offseason.

Pitchers and catchers.

The big arrivals today included Jason Varitek, Tim Wakefield, Matt Clement, Mike Timlin, and Doug Mirabelli. Unless we missed something, Mirabelli did not have to resort to a police escort and sirens. He arrived quietly, though he was wearing orange. Joel Pineiro was also around today, having arrived a few days ago. (He was throwing with a red glove today. Hideki Okajima has also been spotted with a red version.) They're starting to trickle in, greeted by a massive pack of media and chilly temperatures.

Varitek drove down from Georgia yesterday, arriving last night. I asked him to contribute a story or anecdote to the blog. He looked up at me, somewhat incredulously, and asked if I remembered the last time he told anyone in the media a story. Good point, Jason. He did say he would speak with the media tomorrow. No time today.

Got a chance to catch up with Alberto Castillo, the new free agent catcher brought in this season. I met him for the first time, as I mentioned recently, when I was down in the Dominican. He's an interesting guy, has been around forever, or at least since he signed at 17. (He turned 37 earlier this week.) Perhaps the key piece of information was the fact that he can actually speak a bit of Japanese. He's not fluent or anything, but he's caught Hideo Nomo and Masato Yoshii, so he has at least a foundation of baseball terminology. We'll keep watch on whether he spends some time catching either Okajima or Daisuke Matsuzaka during spring training. He also has a reunion coming up -- outfielder Alex Ochoa was his roommate in Triple A back in the early '90s.

Time to write for the print edition. I should be back for a final entry in a few hours.

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