Sept. 22, 2010
It was great to get over to Hawkins Field Tuesday for a look at the Commodores' first practice, even if there wasn't a scrimmage. (That will have to wait until the weekend I am told.)
There were some familiar faces; Maggie Corbin, as the first lady of Vanderbilt Baseball, never misses a first practice. Former Commodore Russell Brewer visited for about one hour and reported that he was feeling healthy after getting on the mound for the Colorado Rockies Casper (WY) Rookie Level team. Brian Harris just couldn't stay away after playing in 39 games for the Tampa Bay Rays Appalachian League affiliate. Jonathan White made a surprise appearance after his barber cancelled on him, but was impressed with a couple of newcomers.
On Tony Kemp (freshman outfielder from Centennial High School) chasing flyballs in batting practice, White said, "He's got some serious speed. You can't teach that. It reminds me of the first time I saw (former Commodore centerfielder) Antoan Richardson and I just said to myself 'I'm not going to be playing outfield anytime soon.' Antoan had the ability to track down any ball and he (Kemp) is doing the same thing."
On Conrad Gregor (freshman infielder/outfielder from Carmel, Ind.) hitting batting practice, White remarked, "He's huge and look at that swing. It's like he's ready now. The ball just makes that sound off of his bat."
With extended drills for both infield and outfield, it was difficult to pay attention to individuals, but it was nice to see the energy on a late summer day.