Meaningless baseball is still baseball

Chicago White Sox at Baltimore Orioles
As much as I love baseball, I find the first few weeks of Spring Training to be rather, kind of, howdoyousay ... boring.

Yes, that's it boring.

There's the initial rush of pitchers and catchers reporting, and that's great. The first (and sometimes only) moments in which each team truly has a realistic shot at winning a World Series title.

Yep, you too Pittsburgh.

And while the game stories might be an absolute snoozer in principle, there are still nuggets.

Like this one from The Trib:

Ozzie-watching is one of the most interesting parts of any Cubs- White Sox game, particularly during a 13-0 blowout in Cactus League play.

Jeff Austin, a 35-year-old ex-Chicagoan who now lives in Pine Cliffe, Colo., had a prime seat for Saturday's showdown at HoHoKam Park, sitting right behind Ozzie Guillen's folding chair to the right of the Sox's dugout.

Guillen carried on an animated conversation with Austin throughout the game, and also spoke with several other Cubs fans during pauses in the action.

"Ozzie was great," Austin said. "There was a little kid sitting next to us, and Ozzie was telling him 'Hey kid, don't grow up to be a Cubs fan. They'll pick on you, and then you'll have to learn how to fight.' "

Or this one from the Sun-Times:

So much for the heat and hatred of Cubs-Sox starting up in spring training.

With the White Sox' move from Tucson to the Phoenix area, the teams play five games this spring instead of two -- more than the Cubs play against any other team.

''It's kind of weird,'' Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said before Saturday's first meeting, ''because now it's like a regular spring-training game. Before it was like showtime. The game was big, always televised, always a weekend.''

Considering all the hugging and reunions between players and staff on the field, these guys might wind up best pals by the end of camp.

But seriously, aren't these teams hated rivals when June comes around.

Eh, kind of.

It's games like these where it doesn't matter that the Cubs won 13-0, because the pitcher who shutout the Sox probably will be bagging groceries with the future Kurt Warner and whoever did the offensive damage will be struggling to hit 80 mile-per-hour fastballs in Peoria, Ill., before you know it.

In more (non)news, Jake Peavy remains interested in the Cubs. At this point, Peavy's the girl you want to date and kind of wants to date you, but she's got a boyfriend and you're addicted to Internet porn.

Lou Piniella is "intrigued" by Curt Schilling. I'm intrigued by the kind of blog wars Schilling and I could have. Think he could hire me on as a full-time blogger? Keep your fingers crossed.

Overall, I'm intrigued and interested by Manny Ramirez, if only because he's healthier than Milton Bradley, who injured himself by drawing a walk.

No wonder old-school baseball nerds hate Stat Boy's like me.

Bradley might become the first Cub to have a walk-off walk taken away from him because his ankles and knees shatter to the point where he can't make it to first base.

It's a Cub thing, it could happen.