Phillies all-star first baseman Ryan Howard made his first appearance at spring training Thursday afternoon, arriving at his locker during the morning then heading outside with the rest of the position players who were present to take swings on the diamond at Bright House Networks Field.
Howard has a highly-anticipated arbitration hearing scheduled for Feb. 20 in St. Petersburg. He is scheduled to address the media for the first time tomorrow, at which point we'll get a chance to talk to him about his on-going negotiations with the Phillies. When the two sides submitted figures, they were $3 million apart. The club offered $7 million, while Howard and agent Casey Close asked for $10 million.
Howard hit .268 with 47 home runs last season, but also struck out a major league record 199 times.