FORT MYERS, FLA. -- It has been an entertaining morning so far.
The Twins are on the field preparing for their game against the Red Sox, the first of five meetings between clubs this spring. While the team loosened up in the outfield, Nelson Cruz went to third base and started taking grounders.
(Before you jump to conclusions, keep in mind that he takes grounders every now an then just to do SOMETHING on the field.)
Unfortunately for him, Willians Astudillo was nearby and was letting him have it every time Cruz botched a play, his cackling echoing throughout Hammond Stadium. Lots of laughter.
Former Twin Trevor Plouffe is at camp today. Plouffe is onto something as an analyst and will be working with Jomboy media this year. Look for him to be a lock as a guest whenever I fill in at KFAN...if they ever let me again.
The MLB Player's Association is in town today to meet with the club, so the clubhouse was closed for a bit this morning as a procedural meeting was held. There's a bigger meeting scheduled for tonight at a remote location in Fort Myers. Looks like the union wants to meet with their members in places where they will be more comfortable being candid.
Former Twin Trevor Hildenberger is on the travel roster for the Red Sox today. Also here is Peter Fatse, the Red Sox assistant hitting coach who was a hitting instructor in the Twins minor league system last year.
Former major leaguer Tom Goodwin is the Red Sox first base coach and one of my favorite people in the game. I covered Goody when he played for the Royals. He had a brother who is a successful attorney and a sister who was an airline pilot at the time. And they used to give him a hard time when he came home for the holidays because he was playing in the majors but earning less than they were (well, back then pilots did real well).
Cruz will make his spring training debut today. Soak it up, because there's a chance he won't play much this early in camp. Last spring, he played on Feb. 23 then didn't appear in the next 12 games.
Kenta Maeda makes his spring training and Twins debut today.
Andrew Benintendi, LF
Jackie Bradley, Jr., CF
J.D. Martinez, DH
Mitch Moreland, 1B
Christian Vazquez, C
Kevin Pillar, RF
Bobby Dalbec, 3B
Jonathan Arauz, SS
Chad De La Guerra, 2B
Nathan Eovaldi. RHP
Luis Arraez, 2B
Eddie Rosario, LF
Nelson Cruz, DH
Alex Avila, C
Ehire Adrianza, 1B
Jake Cave, RF
Willians Astudillo, 3B
Royce Lewis, SS
Gilberto Celestino, CF
Kenta Maeda, RHP