Crabs fans, the wait is over. Thursday marked a semi-offical first day of the 68th season of Crabs Baseball as the first group of players gathered at the Arcata Ball Park for their first official practice.
"It's always special getting out here and getting the ball rolling," said seventh-year manager Matt Nutter as the session was winding down. "I'm excited, the guys swung it well."
After Friday night's opening dinner, the season kicks off Saturday with two games against the Solano Mudcats, the first at 12:30 p.m. and the second an evening tilt at 7 p.m. The two teams finish their three-game series Sunday at 12:30.
As is usually the case, the full complement of players won't be here right away. Some are still in school, some are on teams still playing for championships.
"They're trickling in right now, we'll be a little thin the first week," said Nutter. But I look forward to sitting back and watching the guys play, getting to know what they can do."
Nutter hinted that the shortage of players might end up pulling a couple of former fan favorites out of retirement, if only temporarily. One thing they're definitely short on this weekend is catcher, and it just so happens that coaches Brad Morgan and Jeff Giacomini have each spent their share of time behind the dish.
And now…play ball!