For two weeks at the start of each fall, we build a base of conditioning for our position players. In "dad speak", we do some running to get in shape. Today was the first day several of our newcommers have taken a step faster than a hurried walk in a couple of months. You can always tell who has spent their summer preparing and who decided they'd just wait till we opened up to get in shape. It's not really rocket science, either. That guy puking over there: He didn't do a whole lot of prep the last couple of months. The guy making awful faces so it looks like he's going hard even though he's hit cruise control: Yeah, he didn't do much either. The ones walking up to the ones that are struggling and trying to stand them up? Yeah, they probably at least spent a couple of weeks getting ready.
Does all that really matter? At the end of the day, I guess not. We're not gonna put a lineup together based on what they do over the summer. We ARE going to put a lineup together based on who plays the best this fall, and sometimes, those guys who are getting in shape now take a little longer to get going than the ones who are ready to roll on day 1. It is very difficult to play well when you're to sore or tired to move, heh.
The good news is that 95% of this group came into camp in great shape and ready to get after it. What excites me about that fact is that guys that get after rarely have to be motivated to compete or to play hard. My first impression of this team's character is a very good one. I don't know what the coming weeks will reveal about our talent, attitude, or integrity, but I do know that right now... It looks like its gonna be a damned good year.