First Workout in Fort Myers Brings Excitement -- and Teaching

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First Workout in Fort Myers Brings Excitement -- and Teaching
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

FORT MYERS, FLA. Joe Mauer was all business, ready to confront a workload complicated by a WBC detour. Cole De Vries was reminding himself to be himself, to make the day enjoyable but not overwhelming. Infield instructor Joe Vavra was apprehensive about every little detail of teaching every little detail. ¶ And for Rich Harden, Wednesday's opening practice for pitchers and catchers was all about the simple joy of being a baseball player again. ¶ "I was a little excited," Harden said of his first day in a big-league uniform in 17 months. "It was fun to get back out there -- just to be pitching on a mound." Everyone approaches the first workout of spring training a little differently; heck, there's no general agreement whether it means the baseball season is practically upon us, or still a six-week eternity off. But all of the 50-plus Twins players who practiced in front of small but curious crowds in 80-degree weather Wednesday would agree: It's a blast to be back at work...

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