Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Walk

So I thought during Spring Training, every now and then, I'd feature an aspect of our everyday life that's interesting (at least I hope it is) and unique to the experience here in camp. Today I wanted to talk about something that stares you right in the face every morning and is waiting for you after every day at the field, the walk.

My luxurious room at the Holiday Inn
As I arrived at camp I found myself lucky enough to be placed in the nicest hotel out of all of those offered to spring training invitees, the Holiday Inn. But there is one drawback. Those staying at the less spacious and attractive La Quinta (which is a fine establishment in itself for all of those hardworking La Quinta staff members reading this blog) have a four-tenths of a mile shorter walk to and from the field than those of us staying at the handsome Holiday Inn. Now, that doesn't seem like much but in walking terms that equates to about 8 minutes of a good brisk walk. So, overall, everyday walking to the field in the morning and walking back to the hotel after our day is done we travel a combined 2.08 miles. That equates to a 1.04 mile walk each way which takes about 18 minutes at a good pace to traverse.

The stats from my walk to the field this morning
Map of the walk

Not only is this walk a lengthy one, its not the prettiest or the safest either. The first half of the walk on the rights sits US-19. A highway always filled with masses of cars. "A peaceful walk in the morning" you say, NO. It is loud at all hours of the day with Florida motorists who I have found to be quite rude and usually in a hurry. To make things worse, the sidewalks that pedestrians are supposed to use as a safe-haven from the mechanical chaos of the road; gone from construction. So at 5 o'clock in the morning, in near pitch black before the cowardly sun has decided shown his face, I find myself dodging incoming traffic walking in the make-shift pedestrian path "generously" designated by a random cone here or there.  To add to the hilarity, to your left as you sidestep another car you might notice Clearwater's trashiest strip joint, Personalities. A good reminder to work hard everyday at camp so you don't wind up "dancing" to pay off your college loans.......

But really the walk is not all bad. While it certainly isn't peaceful in the morning, it is a good way to wake yourself up for another demanding day at the field. I actually enjoy it. I've turned down a few rides from other players to make the walk to help me get focused on getting better that day. The path doesn't have all ugly sites either. There is a really cool classic car shop on the way, and you pass Lenny's too which gives you good feelings of free food. But the best thing about the walk is you have to pass Bright House Field, the big league Spring Training site, on the way. As if Spring Training in itself isn't motivating enough, that reminder of who is playing just across the way and the opportunities you will be given to get there really gets your juices flowing.

When you add it all up the walk really isn't a negative or a positive. It just is what it is, one of those things that makes Spring Training so unique.


  1. Eric,

    I just recently found your blog and I love it. I am well past my time for pursuing a life in baseball but I am still quite capable of living it vicariously through others. I look forward to following your blog and following you as your pursue the dream of stepping onto the turf at CBP.

    I wish you success and health...

  2. DeMarcus MaxwellMarch 8, 2011 at 5:33 PM

    sexy petty

  3. Personalities? That is a terrible name for a strip club...isn't that the last thing you go to a strip club for? Doubtful anyone is there for the witty conversation. You might need to stop in once...for research of course, and blog material.

  4. Eaasssyy Jason...I know where u live!

  5. As always, interesting and entertaining stuff.
    I also think Jason should become a professional blog commenter.

  6. But what did you have to eat at Lenny's?