Dodgers Spring Training Notes - Feb. 22

While many of the position players have been working out voluntarily at Camelback Ranch for the last few days on the minor league side, Monday marked the official report date for the full squad with their first workout.

THE BOSS AT WORK: Manager Don Mattingly has been standing in the batter's box periodically during bullpen sessions, today Hiroki Kuroda, Carlos Monasterios, Rubby De La Rosa, Tim Redding and Wilkin De La Rosa threw live batting practice to Dodger catchers and minor leaguers. The rest of the pitching staff participated in fielding and bunting drills this morning.

HIGH APPROVAL RATINGS: Dodger left-hander Hong-Chih Kuo threw his first bullpen session of Spring Training along with Clayton Kershaw, Mike MacDougal, Kenley Jansen, Blake Hawksworth, Ramon Troncoso, Jon Garland and Javy Guerra. Kuo was selected to his first All-Star team in 2010 and led all Major League relievers with a 1.200 ERA as he set a club record for lowest ERA among pitchers with at least 50.0 innings pitched, besting Eric Gagne's 1.202 ERA in 2003. The previous day, Chad Billingsley threw his second bullpen of the spring along with Jonathan Broxton, Matt Guerrier, Travis Schlichting, Jon Link, Scott Elbert, Luis Vasquez and Javy Guerra. Non-roster hopefuls Ron Mahay, Lance Cormier, Oscar Villarreal, Roman Colon and Jon Huber also took turns on the hill. 

JUST MISSED DAYTONA: The Dodgers would like to recognize Spring Training Instructor Maury Wills, who has been at Camelback Ranch since the beginning of the week, schooling the pitchers and catchers on bunting and baserunning. Wills first came to Spring Training with the club in 1951 at the age of 19. Wills' first camp was in Vero Beach, but the Dodgers actually trained in Daytona Beach prior to three seasons (1915, 1916 and 1946).  

  DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
ACTING PRESIDENTIAL
WINTER WEATHER Pitchers and catchers hit the cages for their workout this morning as cold temperatures and a sopping wet field forced the troops inside at Camelback Ranch – Glendale. The most exciting debut of the afternoon belonged to two-year old Dreson Ethier, who took some hacks at a wiffle ball in the Dodger clubhouse, displaying the trade-mark leg kick of his father and a bit more speed on the bases (which in this instance was a tight circle on the carpet). Alas, the curly-haired toddler showed his wares from the right-side instead of Dad's left, baffling the peanut gallery, including Ted Lilly, Hong-Chih Kuo, Hiroki Kuroda and Jon Garland.   

PITCHING ON A FULL TANK Starter Chad Billingsley threw his second bullpen of the spring along with Jonathan Broxton, Matt Guerrier, Travis Schlichting, Jon Link, Scott Elbert, Luis Vasquez and Javy Guerra. Non-roster hopefuls Ron Mahay, Lance Cormier, Oscar Villarreal, Roman Colon and Jon Huber also took turns on the hill.   

PHOTO OPS: Dodger youngsters John Ely, Dee Gordon, Kenley Jansen and Trayvon Robinson took several high tech head shots for the Major League Baseball Players Association so their likeness can be used in two upcoming video games. The first will be 2K Sports' "Major League Baseball 2K11" and the second is "MLB The Show 2011" for Sony PlayStation. Over the last few years, each of the Dodgers have had their head scans done for these and other video games.  

THE GRAND Marshall: Dodger Special Advisor to the Chairman Tommy Lasorda is expected to arrive in Arizona tonight and will begin his 62nd season with the organization. The Hall of Fame skipper belongs to 17 different Halls of Fame and in 2005 he was the honorary starter at the California 500 NASCAR race in Fontana.   

  JUST MISSED DAYTONA: The Dodgers would like to recognize Spring Training Instructor Maury Wills, who has been at Camelback Ranch since the beginning of the week, schooling the pitchers and catchers on bunting and baserunning. Wills first came to Spring Training with the club in 1951 at the age of 19. Wills' first camp was in Vero Beach, but the Dodgers actually trained in Daytona Beach prior to three seasons (1915, 1916 and 1946).  

HAIL TO THE CHIEF: Dodger Special Advisor to the Chairman Tommy Lasorda reported for his 62nd Spring Training with the Dodgers this morning and offered advice to numerous players in camp.  The global baseball ambassador has met seven U.S. Presidents – Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.   

TICKET TALK: Single-game Dodger tickets will go on sale this Saturday, February 26, with fans having the opportunity to purchase a limited number of Opening Day tickets that will be available only at Dodger Stadium. Individual tickets will also be available for purchase starting at 10 a.m. online at dodgers.com/ticketst or by calling 866-DODGERS. Fans are invited to celebrate the start of the 2011 season beginning at 8:00 a.m. in parking Lot P and enjoy their first Dodger Dog of the year for just $2. The Dodgers' annual On Sale festivities will include music, trivia contests, new-for-2011 Dodger merchandise and will be hosted by KABC 790 TalkRadio's morning host Peter Tilden. Additionally, fans that purchase at least one ticket at Dodger Stadium this Saturday will receive a fleece blanket.

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