Spring training games offer much for the baseball world. They offer knowledge; they offer glimpses of the upcoming season; they offer looks at minor league up-and-comers; and they offer first looks at those recovering from injury.
Spring training games are not your average games—they do not feature a team's starters all the way through for the most part—but they do offer looks and lessons to be learned.
The first few days of spring training are in the books, and baseball teams and fans have already learned much. T
he Yankees have learned that Bartolo Colon can still pitch, but he is very, very heavy on the mound. The Braves have learned that Chipper seems to be recovering fairly well from his knee surgery. The Twins have learned that neither Mauer, nor Morneau are completely healthy.
The Rockies have learned that even spring training games can result in injury as a collision between Ian Stewart and Carlos Gonzalez showed. The A's learned that Michael Choice is a baller. The Padres and Mariners learned that minor league pitchers in spring training games can have some very, very bad showings that lead to massive run production—a total of 25 runs scored.
The Phillies learned that their aces are on point, but Chase Utley has knee tendonitis. The Marlins learned that Mike Stanton has a strained right quad.
Spring training can also lull teams and fans into a false sense of success.
Teams get a good spring win/loss record, and everyone starts to see visions of the post season dancing in their heads, only to come crashing back to earth when the regular season begins.
Spring training games have to be taken with a grain of salt—especially early on.
While there is much to be learned from spring training games, the real story only starts to develop as opening day approaches; but that is still several weeks away.
In the meantime, teams and fans can enjoy a little bit of what they might see in the regular season, and a lot of what they might see in the future from minor leaguers who get playing time.
All in all though, every bit of knowledge is to be absorbed like a sponge for all those winter starved baseball lovers.