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A Turtle heads to spring training.


Yes ladies and gentlemen, I'm off to get a look at the old ballclub, with an eye toward the newcomers, particularly Matt Diaz, Scott Olsen and Kevin Correa. I'll check out the vets, such as Joel Hanrahan, Ronny Cedeno and Ryan Doumit, but am eager to see youngsters Daniel Moskos, Pedro Alvarez and Tony Watson.

What in the name of Madville am I talking about? Well, later this week I get to go to spring training, only it's the Pittsburgh Pirates spring training in Bradenton. As many of you know, part of my duties are to serve as the team chaplain for the West Virginia Power, Pittsburgh's SALLY League affiliate. Baseball Chapel, in conjunction with Fellowship of Christian Athletes, is sending its major league and minor league chaplains to spring training for three days.

In addition to seeing Buccos games with the Blue Jays, Orioles and Phillies, I'll get to meet the players and coaches from the team I'll be serving this season and catch up with last year's crew. It's my first trip to spring training since back in my sports writing days when I covered the Reds and I'm looking forward to it. Sunny Florida where, unlike in Proctorville/Huntington, everything isn't covered fanny deep by the mighty Ohio River sounds very nice right now.

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