PHOENIX AZ - FEBRUARY 18: Pitcher Takashi Saito #40 (2nd from left) of the Milwaukee Brewers warms up with teammates during a MLB spring training practice at Maryvale Baseball Park on February 18 2011 in Phoenix Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
On this day one year ago, pitchers and catchers reported to Maryvale for the first official day of spring training in 2011. It was a simpler time, certainly. We didn't know yet that Zack Greinke was reporting to camp with cracked ribs that would force him to open the season on the DL. We hadn't seen Yuniesky Betancourt in a Brewer uniform, and we had no idea that Ron Roenicke was going to start Mark Kotsay in center field in an NLCS game.
We also didn't know, however, that the team was about to sign Rickie Weeks to a long term deal, that one of the 2011 team's biggest stars (Nyjer Morgan) was still weeks away from joining the roster or that John Axford was about to post a sub-2 ERA while leading the National League in saves.
All told, given the opportunity I'd most certainly go back and experience 2011 all over again. I guess we can only hope the 2012 season is that much fun.
With help from the B-Ref Play Index, happy birthday today to: