|From the Smells Like Mascot blog|
Joe Nathan throws an early bullpen session, the pitching coach talks of how free and easy his delivery is, and it's easy to dream that yes, the bullpen ace of years past is back — easy because we want to believe it.
And maybe he will be. But he hasn't thrown to a hitter yet, hasn't thrown on back-to-back days.
Tsuyoshi Nishioka drives some balls to the gaps, and employs a rehearsed line of English to greet his new teammates, and we can envision an All-Star — but mastering "Nice to meet you" is just one step in the acclimation process, and pre-camp batting practice pitches offer neither major league velocity nor major league movement.
But if we can't be optimistic, if we can't dream a little, where's the fun and the romance of spring training?
A dose of wariness of the hype is doubtless wise. But let us indulge anyway. Reality will set in soon enough. Nathan and Nishioka and the rest will establish what they bring over the coming weeks and months.
If we can't be adorably optimistic now, when can we?