Intrasquad games are even worse than kissing your sister – for every good thing that happens on the field, something bad is happeningt to one of your players.
Team Ichiro beat Team Jack Wilson, 3-1, in a game touched by some solid pitching and aggressive baserunning that included five stolen bases, including two by Milton Bradley and a steal of third by catcher Miguel Olivo.
“We’re going to be aggressive,” manager Eric Wedge said. “We’re not going to do anything half-assed or halfway. Today, of course, for every stolen base we had a pitcher who wasn’t holding a runner on very well. That’s the flip-side of intrasquad games.
Rookies Michael Pineda and Blake Beavan started and each worked a scoreless inning, though Beaven saw up close how crazy Ichiro can make a pitcher.
“I was ahead of him, 0-2, and he hit a changeup off his ankles for a hit,” Beavan said. “They told me on the bench, ‘The only guy who could do that is on your team, don’t worry!'”
Pineda, meanwhile, threw all his pitches in one inning: “My slider, my change, my fastball. I threw them all down in the zone.”
All told in a five-inning game, Wedge used 10 pitchers – including Dan Cortes, who hit his pitch limit of 25 while getting just two outs – and nearly every position player got on the field, if not to the plate.
“It was a game just to kick the dust off,” Wedge said. “We watched, we took note, we’ll talk about a few things with players.”