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Surprise in sight: Royals send off spring trucks

Pitchers, catchers report to camp Feb. 13; full squad on Feb. 18
MLB.com @FlannyMLB

KANSAS CITY -- There are numerous unanswered questions surrounding the Royals and their roster that soon are to be resolved in Spring Training.

But the first steps of the process unfolded Friday morning as the team packed up its moving trucks outside Kauffman Stadium for the journey to the team's Spring Training home in Surprise, Ariz.

KANSAS CITY -- There are numerous unanswered questions surrounding the Royals and their roster that soon are to be resolved in Spring Training.

But the first steps of the process unfolded Friday morning as the team packed up its moving trucks outside Kauffman Stadium for the journey to the team's Spring Training home in Surprise, Ariz.

On a brisk, 21-degree morning, workers loaded tons of baseballs, bats, video equipment and all the items necessary for the Royals to embark on Spring Training. The two trucks are expected to arrive in Surprise on Monday.

Pitchers and catchers report on Feb. 13, with the full squad reporting on Feb. 18. The first full-squad workout is Feb. 19, and the Royals' first spring game is slated for Feb. 24 against the Dodgers at Surprise Stadium at 2:05 p.m. CT.

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"I think we're all excited right now with the prospect of rebuilding and starting over," said visitors clubhouse attendant Chuck Hawke, who supervised Truck Day on Friday. "We've been to the top. And now it's exciting to work our way back there."

As years pass, Truck Day for the Royals has become less cumbersome.

"Once the facilities in Surprise were renovated," Hawke said, "we're able to store things there year-round, and that makes it easier. We're certainly moving a lot less items than we used to."

Tweet from @Royals: #Royals crew and our partners at @ODFL_Inc working hard to pack up #RoyalsST truck today. Thanks guys! pic.twitter.com/dgMQDlu1H6

Yet there still are plenty of items to move, even baseball's time-honored treasures of bubble gum and sunflower seeds.

"There's a lot more video equipment nowadays as the game has evolved," Hawke noted. "I think that has changed over the years."

Tweet from @Royals: Packed up and ready to make the journey to Surprise, AZ! #RoyalsST pic.twitter.com/qEhooJzqSp

There are fewer personal items to move as most players simply have those items shipped to Arizona. But players who live in the Kansas City area -- Ian Kennedy, Alex Gordon, Danny Duffy and others -- still utilize the team trucks.

"Some of that will never change," Hawke said.

Temperatures, by the way, were expected to reach 79 degrees in Surprise on Friday.

"Makes you want to get there in a hurry," Hawke said.

Jeffrey Flanagan has covered the Royals since 1991, and for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter @FlannyMLB.

Kansas City Royals