Perceptions change quickly in baseball. A year ago, Trevor Reckling was among the Angels' most promising prospects, a left-handed pitcher with a dazzling fastball and a chance to ride the fast track to the majors.
But Reckling struggled at Triple-A last year, got demoted and quickly fell off all those lists of the team's top prospects. But life goes on. Reckling doesn't turn 22 until May and he's back in big-league camp, with a chance to jump back on the Angels' depth chart.
Manager Mike Scioscia and pitching coach Mike Butcher paid special attention during Reckling's short bullpen session Wednesday. Scioscia tried to put a little pressure on the kid to see if he could hit a very precise spot, down and in to a left-handed batter.
Reckling nailed it every time, with good zip on his fastball.
"How'd you ever get hit?" Scioscia asked him.
Maybe the answer is simple: It's a hard game.