Their friendship started in 1998 in — where else? — a batting cage. The two have stayed close ever since.
Once again, they are teammates, this time with the new-look Marlins.
“When we are in the cages, it feels like Portland, Ore., because that’s where we were at,” Pierre said. “In Portland, we started hitting and would keep hitting and keep hitting. Now we got older, and we know how to work. He does different drills now, and I do pretty much the same drills I did back then.”
No longer are they wide-eyed 20-year-olds trying to move up the Minor League ranks. They are now 35-year-olds who still carry their same staunch work habits and youthful enthusiasm.
“They’re pretty similar players,” manager Mike Redmond said. “They are similar guys. I’ve already watched them. They talk a lot to the other players. I know our young guys have a lot of questions for them. Having their presence, the way they work, they show up early and they go about their business.
“A lot of people don’t think about that stuff. As a manager, you see that, and the players see it. It’s not something they have to talk about. They see the way they work. To see how many hits those guys have collected over their careers, it’s hard to not sit there and go, ‘Man, maybe I should emulate this guy, it might help me.’ That’s why they’re here.”
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