Thunder mascot Tommy T-Bird showed up to spring training in visibly poor physical condition.

Originally, the plan was that Tommy would work himself into shape during the first home stand. However, over the course of the week it became evident that Tommy was not progressing as the team had hoped.

He pulled up lame after rounding second during the mascot race one day, and on another, he clearly lost his focus and ended up in leftfield.

The Thunder Mascot Review Board, which handles all mascot related decisions, made up of Coastal Bend General Manager CJ Bauer, Assistant General Manager Ray Hunt, and Assistant General Manger Javier Limon, held a secret, closed-doors meeting during the game last night to decide Tommy's fate. After a few hours of intense debate, it was decided that Tommy T-Bird would be given this week off in order to hit the gym with one very important stipulation: Win or he's done.

Chief Executive Officer of the Mascot Review Board and Thunder General Manager CJ Bauer said, "We have given Tommy this next week off. The expectation is that Tommy will use the time off to train for the mascot race Sunday, June 28 where he will be racing for his job. I have complete confidence that Tommy T-Bird will take this week extremely seriously and come back prepared both physically and mentally."

Tommy is scheduled to return Sunday, June 28, 2009, which is the first game of a 4-game series against Amarillo. Tommy needs all the support he can get on Sunday so come cheer him on as he must win Sunday's mascot race or he will never again be seen in the Coastal Bend.

Ed McCaskey is a representative for the Coastal Bend Thunder. Readers may contact him at (361) 933-1120.