Florida swamps, Arizona deserts,
Hosting leagues named for grapefruit and cactus.
Players damp from the efforts they exert
Sprinting and swinging their way through practice.
Veterans trying to play out the string,
Superstars at the height of their powers;
Faded prospects getting one final shot
And hotshot rookies perfecting their swings.
And we, the fans, can while away hours
As the game consumes our every thought.
From Williams to Rice to Nomar to Youk,
From Ruth and Gehrig to Jorge and Jeter;
Legends like Willie, Mickey and the Duke
Fielding fly balls and swinging at heaters.
Spring training’s arrival heralds the season
Better than flowers or showers or grass;
It is the truest spring rite of them all.
It’s a time of instinct over reason;
Everyone is first – and no one is last –
And your team just might play deep into fall.