Monday, April 5, 2010

Welcome to Bradenton's newest folks

One by one they got up, gave their names, their position, where they're from, and sat down.

Some spoke loud and clear.

Others were hard to hear.

No big deal.

When you're surrounded by a roomful of strangers, some guys prefer to let their hitting, glovework or pitching do the talking.

Which is what the community is waiting to see from our new Bradenton Marauders.

The Pittsburgh Pirates Florida State League ballclub held a luncheon Monday at Pirate City, another warmup for Thursday night's FSL season opener at McKechnie Field.

When one club official said the team is a melting pot, he wasn't kidding.

The Marauders come from 14 states and Puerto Rico, as well as the Dominican Republic and Venezuela.

Canada, too.

Pitcher Tom Boleska is from Burlington, Ontario.

Florida's got two players on the Marauders --- pitcher Michael Felix of Panama City and catcher Tony Sanchez of Miami.

We've even got an outfielder, Quincy Latimore, from Apex, N.C., and another outfielder, Robbie Grossman, from Cypress, Texas, both cool-sounding places of origin.

They all represent Bradenton now.

Welcome, fellas.

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