Spring is in the Air

With pitchers and catchers reporting on February 17, the off-season officially comes to a close. Now it is time to get down to business and that is exactly what the Diamondbacks have done in the week leading up to report day. The Diamondbacks now have all players under contract including all those who were eligible for salary arbitration. Going into the off-season, the Diamondbacks had four players where were eligible for arbitration. These players were Brian Anderson, Matt Mantei, Andy Fox, and Brad Clontz. It was reported earlier here that Anderson signed a three year deal with the club. This was followed by Matt Mantei signing a one year deal with the Diamondbacks with the team and Matt agreeing to continue to work on a long term deal. Andy Fox was the next to sign when he also agreed to a one year deal. The final player to sign was pitcher Brad Clontz who signed a one year deal the day before his scheduled salary arbitration hearing. With these players under contract, the Diamondbacks can now focus on the task at hand, getting ready for the upcoming season.

Not all is well with the Diamondbacks as spring training begins. Steve Finley is recovering from a hand injury he sustained while decorating his Christmas tree in Colorado. The hand is healing nicely but he has not yet received approval to hit yet from the doctor. Fins was allowed to report early with the pitchers and catchers to receive special attention from the medical staff. Another of the walking wounded is David Dellucci. David had a rare problem with his wrist and had to have it surgically repaired. There were thoughts that the injury may be career ending but through hard work Dellucci began throwing and hitting on the first of February. Unfortunately, this story did not have a happy ending as Dellucci was leaving Bank One Ballpark after a rehabilitation workout and his new pick-up was struck by a motorist who ran a red light. This has caused David to experience back pain and spasms which may limit his work through the early stages of spring training. Travis Lee has been working this off-season in San Diego at his college alma mater. Lee has been working in the outfield and with his swing to try and recapture some of the magic he showed during his rookie season. Todd Stottlemyre has again been hitting the weight machines to build muscle around his partially torn rotator cuff. He has added 25 pounds of muscle and says he is in the best shape of his career. Todd has changed numbers this year and will wear number 30 rather than 32 that he wore in the past.

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