Spring training is a time for optimism, and it's not only fans who participate in wildly delusional thinking. Players, coaches, and even general managers will all give upbeat-sounding quotes, and the reporters who are in Florida for essentially the sole purpose of relaying these quotes to us will dutifully report things like, "The bullpen looks like it will be a strength this year!" Which is one of those things they wrote about the Orioles every year, and it was never true, until last year.

Another of the spring training story cliches has to do with fielding. There will always be stories written about players who must improve their defense. Last year, we heard about Mark Reynolds losing 15 pounds to improve his agility, which helped him at third base not at all.