Anyone know how MLB spring training works? Never really got into it and just a quick google sends me to this page from MLB. So what, they divide up the games between Cactus and Grapefruit Leagues? And divide them up further by locations? I'm confused. Was hoping to get an answer here before I went down an unnecessary rabbit hole..
It's pretty simple. Teams either go to Arizona(Cactus League) or Florida(Grapefruit League) based on their geographic location within the U.S. But there are exceptions: the Cleveland Indians, Cincinnati Reds, Milwaukee Brewers and the two teams from Chicago all train in Arizona. The Houston Astros, Minn Twins, and the St. Louis Cardinals train in Florida.
It breaks down like this. Teams that train in Florida play other teams training in Florida in exhibition games. The same goes for teams training in Arizona.
Here's where it gets interesting. Spring Training teams can play minor league baseball clubs and colleges. We also have what is called intra-squad games, and split-squad games. Intra is when players of the same team play against eachother, and split is when one team is scheduled for two games in one day, so they split the team into two squads and each plays in one of the two games. B Games are considered unofficial Spring Training games. Here, statistics and standings do not count.
There you have it. One thing I find the most interesting about Spring Training is that it's all about the pitchers. They report in first thing during Spring Training because they benefit from a longer training duration. Position players arrive when practice begins a few days later. I've heard many position players complain that it's mostly about warming up their pitchers for the upcoming season and it's kind of dull for them.