For Phillies fans, the countdown to spring training began minutes after last season's final game, when the club flattened the Mets, 11-0, in manager Pete Mackanin's last game as skipper. But the hiring of eccentric new manager Gabe Kapler, whose theme for the Phillies this year is "Be bold," promises something exciting and different for a team looking to erase the memories of a largely forgettable 2017 season.
While fans will have to wait until March 29 for opening day, when the Phillies will travel to SunTrust Park to take on the Atlanta Braves, spring training games are already here.
The Phillies will play 34 spring games this season — 18 at home at Spectrum Field in Clearwater, Fla., and 16 on the road. The team will open its Grapefruit League schedule Friday in Dunedin, Fla., against the Blue Jays at 1:07 p.m.
NBC Sports Philadelphia will broadcast 17 of the Phillies' spring training games, with most appearing live on NBC Sports Philadelphia+ (formerly the Comcast Network). For the first time, the network also will stream those games live on the NBC Sports App, which requires a cable subscription that includes NBC Sports Philadelphia.
On top of streaming spring games for the first time, NBC Sports Philadelphia's popular crew of Tom McCarthy, John Kruk, Ben Davis, Mike Schmidt and Gregg Murphy is returning to call Phillies games in 2018.
In addition to airing a couple Phillies spring games, the MLB Network will air its spring training series 30 Clubs in 30 Days for the 10th-straight season. The Phillies episode will air March 10 at 7 p.m., and clips will be available through video on demand from both Comcast and Verizon Fios. Unfortunately, a live, authenticated stream of the MLB Network isn't available to Comcast Xfinity subscribers.
SportsRadio 94.1 WIP also will broadcast 12 spring training games, which will be called by broadcasters Larry Andersen and Scott Franzke. This season, Anderson is taking a step back and calling only home games. He'll be replaced on the road by a trio of ex-Phillies players named Kevin: Kevin Frandsen, Kevin Jordan and Kevin Stocker.
Frandsen, who worked the last two years as an evening sports radio host for KNBR 680 in San Francisco, spent two seasons with the Phillies (2012-13). Jordan, who called some games with Franzke last season, spent his entire seven-year career (1995-2001) with the Phillies. Stocker played three seasons with the Phillies (1993-97), and has worked the last 14 years as a college baseball analyst for the Pac-12 Network and CBS Sports Network.
Feb. 22: Phillies 9, University of Tampa 0
Feb. 23: Blue Jays 2, Phillies 1
Feb. 24: Phillies 9, Orioles 6
Feb. 25: Yankees 8, Phillies 3
Feb. 26: At Yankees, 6:35 p.m., WIP
Feb. 27: Tigers, 1:05 p.m; NBCSP+, MLB Network*, NBC Sports App
Feb. 28: At Blue Jays, 1:07 p.m.
March 1: Yankees, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, MLB Network*, NBC Sports App
March 2: At Rays, 1:05 p.m.
March 3: Orioles (split squad), 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, NBC Sports App
March 3: At Pirates (split squad), 1:05 p.m.
March 4: Blue Jays, 1:10 p.m.; NBCSP+, WIP, NBC Sports App
March 5: Twins, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, WIP, MLB Network*, NBC Sports App
March 7: Red Sox, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, MLB Network*, NBC Sports App
March 8: At Yankees, 1:05 p.m.
March 9: Pirates, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, MLB Network*, NBC Sports App
March 10: Rays, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, NBC Sports App
March 11: At Orioles, 6:05 p.m.; WIP
March 12: At Braves, 6:05 p.m.; WIP
March 13: Rays, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, MLB Network*, NBC Sports App
March 14: At Braves, 1:05 p.m.
March 16: Blue Jays (split squad), 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, NBC Sports App
March 16: At Tigers (split squad), 1:05 p.m.
March 17: Braves, 1:05 p.m,; NBCSP, NBC Sports App
March 18: AT Twins, 1:05 p.m.; MLB Network
March 19: At Red Sox, 1:05 p.m.; WIP
March 20: Blue Jays, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, MLB Network*, NBC Sports App
March 21: At Blue Jays, 1:07 p.m.
March 22: Tigers, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, NBC Sports App
March 23: At Pirates, 1:05 p.m.
March 24: At Tigers, 1:05 p.m.
March 25: Orioles, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP, WIP, NBC Sports App
March 26: At Pirates, 1:05 p.m.; MLB Network, WIP
March 27: Pirates, 1:05 p.m.; NBCSP+, NBC Sports App