Sorry about the break from posts, but we have been staying in a disgustingly expensive internet hotel in Florida. But now are in Puerto Rico!!
Free internet in the lounge here, so I'll try and update this once a day if possible.
Here's what you've missed. We were put up in the Hyatt Regency hotel in Sarasota, Florida for the past few days while we played out exhibition games against 3 major league ball teams. They were good, but we matched them and played up to if not the same level. Okay, we did lose 3 games, but we never got dominated or beaten to a pulp by any means.
Game one the host Pirates took us out 5-4, we had twice as many hits as they had, but came out on the short end of a close game against the top team right now in the Grapefruit league.
In game two, we played the Cincinatti Reds, lost 4-3. It was a close one where Rick VanDenHurk made is dutch team debut and threw well, but we lost in extra's to a strong lineup.
Now, I was scheduled to close the first game, and when if came down to it, I couldn't get into the game because of the loss and not playing the bottom of the 9th. So instead I threw a pretty solid bullpen (solid = 50 pitches or so). I was scheduled to close also the last game against the Minnesota Twins, so I got my good bullpen in to ensure I'd be ready to go against the Twins. On a sidenote, my arm feels absolutely amazing down here. The sun and heat really helps warm up a pitchers arm, and an athletes body a whole lot quicker than Vancouver, or Holland weather can around this time of the year.
Game 3, we had another close loss, this time to the Twins. They are a very good young team, and will be fighting for a playoff spot in the AL central this year with the lineup they showed yesterday (a lineup not even featuring their 2 stars Morneau and Mauer). To make sure I'd get some kind of game work in while we play these exhibition games they put me in for the 8th. I ended up entering the game in the 7th with none out and bases loaded, ended up getting the next three guys out. So overall, I was happy about the outing and the solid games our team is playing.
Tomorrow we play the Dominican Republic, it will be a tough one. I think if our offence throws up a 5 or 6 spot on the scoreboard, our pitchers have the arms to keep them under 5, and maybe lock up a huge upset of a win. That would be great, actually beyond great. We want to stay around longer than just 3 more days down here, so we are gunning for game 1.
Check us out on TV, not sure where and when our afternoon local time game will be televised in your city, but check it out. You might just see the biggest upset of the tournament!