The day started with a 2:30am alarm clock going off.
I met the bus at the ballpark in Jackson and loaded equipment, etc then began the journey from Jackson to Orlando, FL. The Generals flew from Phoenix to Orlando because there was no direct flight to Jacksonville.
I’ve never had an entire bus to myself before – but if a 14 hour bus ride could be tolerable, it really was. Spent the time mainly working on game notes and of course the roster that was released today.
After battling traffic and torrential rains, we picked up the team at the Orlando airport about 5:30 this afternoon. It was quite the challenge trying to get all the personal bags and equipment to fit under the bus, but with a few in the aisle on the bus, it worked.
Now the roster…
The starting rotation will go:
Game 1: RHP Taijuan Walker
Game 2: LHP Roenis Elias
Game 3: RHP Hector Noesi
Game 4: RHP Chance Ruffin
Game 5: LHP James Gillheeney
The bullpen will feature RHP Stephen Kohlscheen, RHP Andrew Kittredge, LHP Nick Hill, RHP Forrest Snow, RHP Jonathan Arias, RHP Tyler Burgoon and RHP Carson Smith.
The infield will include Brad Miller, Steven Proscia, Vinnie Catricala, Jack Marder, Gabriel Noriega and Leury Bonilla.
Having Brad Miller and Vinnie Catricala on the left side of the infield will be a treat. Proscia will play first everyday and Marder will play second.
The outfield is the speedy group of Francisco Martinez, Leon Landry, Julio Morban, Abe Almonte and James Jones.
Who will play and who will sit? I don’t know, I am just asking.
Catching will be John Hicks and Brandon Bantz. Both are outstanding defenders and will anchor this pitching staff well. Hicks can run and hit as well.
As I speak, Jim Pankovits is trying to make out a lineup. He has already scrapped about three lineup cards changing his mind. When I asked who would lead off he said its between Almonte, Miller, Landry and Martinez. He said he was leaning towards Martinez.
He also is more excited about this group than last years bunch. Kind of hard to imagine, but he is.
Now, I’ll enjoy the next 2 hours of this bus ride to Jacksonville and hopefully we can get tomorrow’s game in. There is now a 60% chance of thunderstorms tomorrow. So, we will see.