PHOENIX — Big league camp in spring training is long — from the date of pitchers and catchers reporting to Camelback Ranch through the final Cactus League game in Arizona, Dodgers camp this year will be 43 days — and sometimes the clubhouse can get a bit nutty, just to break the monotony.
Exhibit 432: Dodgers interpreter Will Ireton, from Tuesday morning:
Check my insta to see how this ends! #WILLtheTHRILL pic.twitter.com/DHQzWz7Z3w— Alex Wood (@Awood45) March 14, 2017
Ireton, who works as Kenta Maeda’s translator and is a favorite in the clubhouse — Maeda specifically has had some fun at Ireton’s expense — put on about 20 pounds through weight lifting this winter, manager Dave Roberts explained. A few players, including closer Kenley Jansen, issued a challenge.
"That was Will the Thrill, our team mascot. He was challenged by a couple players that he couldn't deadlift 405 pounds,” Roberts said. “As I got wind of this wager, I wanted to see it first hand, so we brought the weight room into the clubhouse this morning. Suffice it to say, he was successful.”
Roberts admitted he was skeptical that Ireton could lift that much weight.
"I was more hoping, but I wasn't counting on it,” Roberts said. “He proved a number of people in the clubhouse wrong.”
Anything to keep things fresh in a long camp.
"Guys are working hard when we're out here, and we're having fun,” Roberts said.