Spring is Right Around the Corner?

During the dark cold winter months everyone looks for signs that spring is just around the corner. Some swear by the Farmer’s Almanac to forecast the beginning of spring. Others rely upon the groundhog not seeing his shadow to signify spring is coming. Still others await the return of birds from their southward migration to tell them when winter is finally over.

As for me, I look to baseball to let me know when winter is finally waning. To a baseball fan, the first sign of spring comes when Major League Baseball announces the schedules for the Cactus League and the Grapefruit League.

This announcement is followed shortly by tickets going on sale at Spring Training venues in Arizona and Florida. Once schedules are released and tickets have gone on sale it won’t be long before pitchers and catchers report to their respective teams.

When the pitchers and catchers arrive it is usually only a few more days until position players roll into Spring Training facilities. The sounds of baseballs hitting the leather of gloves fills the air, the crack of the bat breaks the silence as the days become longer.

The bright blue skies and dark green grass welcome the players back and spring is officially here. In the darkest hours of winter when it seems as though the snow and cold that envelope most of the country will never abate, there is an oasis for baseball fans.

Today marked the official first glimpse of spring for most of the Cactus League facilities. In stadiums around the Valley of the Sun, the ticket office opened and fans could begin purchasing day of game tickets to Spring Training games.

As is always the case, spring does not come on the same day in all places. For fans of the Arizona Diamondbacks, winter lasts slightly longer. Tickets to the final season of Spring Training in Tucson officially go on sale January 23.

So while I sat and watched as fans came and went at the various Cactus League venues I was content in knowing that spring was finally just around the corner. It won’t be long before baseball will be back to the forefront of our lives and it can’t come soon enough if you ask me.

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