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Updated: March 25, 2018
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Grand Slam/Marco Stoovelaar
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Compiled and Copyright © 1997-2018 by Marco Stoovelaar

(Story by Marco Stoovelaar; Photo by Henk Seppen)

Gregorius, Albies and Bogaerts hit homeruns

FORT MYERS / WEST PALM BEACH / KISSIMMEE / TAMPA / SARASOTA, Florida / SURPRISE / PEORIA, Arizona (USA) - On Saturday (March 24), eleven players with a Dutch passport came into action in the Major League Spring Training-games in Florida and Arizona.

Didi Gregorius (New York Yankees), Ozzie Albies (Atlanta Braves) and Xander Bogaerts (Boston Red Sox) all hit homeruns today.

Kevin Josephina was added again to the main-squad of Atlanta Braves and this time, he played in his first Spring Training-game.

Also playing on Saturday were Ray-Patrick Didder, Eugene Helder, Spencer Kieboom, Chris Pieters, Jurickson Profar, Jonathan Schoop and Sharlon Schoop.

(March 24)

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Jonathan Schoop hits sixth Spring Training-homerun. (March 21)
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Seattle adds Aruban Eugene Helder for Spring Training-game. (February 27)
Jonathan Schoop homers for Baltimore. (February 26)
Spencer Kieboom collects 2 basehits for Washington. (February 25)
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At Fort Myers, Boston Red Sox played at home against Houston Astros and won 6-0. Boston took an early 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning.

Xander Bogaerts started as short stop for Boston and was 2-for-3, including a homerun. He scored twice and had two runs batted in.

With two outs in the bottom of the first inning, Hanley Ramirez walked for Boston and J.D. Martinez singled. Hereafter, Boston opened the score on a single by Bogaerts, then two runs were added when Mitch Moreland followed with a triple.

Bogaerts led off the third inning with a grounder. With two outs in the bottom of the fifth inning, Bogaerts homered to increase the lead to 4-0. This was his third Spring Training-homerun.

Bogaerts was replaced in the top of the seventh inning by new centerfielder Aneury Tavarez, while Nick Lovullo took over as short stop.

At West Palm Beach, Washington Nationals lost 4-3 at home against Miami Marlins. Trailing 1-0, Miami scored twice in the fifth and sixth inning. Washington got two runs back in the seventh at bat.

In the top of the eighth inning, Spencer Kieboom entered the game as new catcher for Washington.

He then got his lone at bat in the bottom of the eighth. With two outs, Kieboom singled, but stranded on first base.

At Kissimmee, Atlanta Braves played at home against a split-squad of New York Yankees and lost 8-3. Atlanta broke a 2-2 tie in the seventh inning, but New York then rallied for six runs in the top of the ninth.

Ozzie Albies started at second base for Atlanta and was 1-for-3, which was a 2-run homerun. Besides Albies, two other Antillian-born players played for Atlanta, being Ray-Patrick Didder (Aruba) and Kevin Josephina (Curaçao).

Albies grounded out in the bottom of the first inning.

New York then took a 2-0 lead in the top of the fourth when Aaron Hicks led off with a homerun and Ryan McBroom homered with one out. In the bottom of the fourth, Ender Inciarte led off for Atlanta with a single. Hereafter, Albies homered to make it a 2-2 score.

Albies struckout in the sixth inning. Hereafter, Freddie Freeman singled, but his pinch-runner Sean Kazmar was forced out on a grounder by Nicholas Markakis. When the latter reached first base, Josephina entered the game as pinch-runner to make his Spring Training-debut. He was also with the team earlier in the week, but then didn't play. Josephina stranded on first base, then became the new second baseman in the top of the seventh. He took over from Albies, who was replaced by new leftfielder Ezequiel Carrera.

In the top of the eighth, Didder entered the game as the new third baseman, replacing Rio Ruiz.

In the bottom of the eighth, Josephina got his lone at bat and struckout. Didder didn't got an at bat in this game.

At Tampa, another split-squad of New York Yankees played at home and won 13-6 against Toronto Blue Jays. Leading 7-6, this Yankees-team also had a 6-run rally, but they did it in the seventh inning.

Didi Gregorius started as short stop for New York and was 1-for-3, which was a 2-run homerun. This was his fourth homerun this Spring Training.

In the top of the first inning, Toronto took a 2-0 lead when Randal Grichuk hit a 2-run homerun with two outs. In the bottom of the first, also with two outs, the Yankees came alongside. Giancarlo Stanton then walked and Gregorius followed with a homerun.

Gregorius struckout in the third inning.

In the fifth, New York broke a 3-3 tie when Stanton hit a 2-run homerun. Hereafter, Gregorius grounded out. He was replaced in the top of the seventh inning by new short stop Abiatal Avelino.

At Surprise, Texas Rangers played at home against Cleveland Indians and lost 10-3. Texas led 2-0 after five innings, but Cleveland then did its scoring in the final four at bats.

Jurickson Profar started as third baseman for Texas and was 0-for-2.

Profar led off the second inning and then flied out and he then struckout in the fifth at bat.

In the top of the sixth, Profar was replaced by new third baseman Christian Lopes.

...Todd Van Steensel pitching for...
...Kinheim in the 2012 season...
(© Photo: Henk Seppen)
At Sarasota, Baltimore Orioles played at home against Minnesota Twins and lost 12-4. Minnesota rallied for five runs in the top of the second inning, but Baltimore narrowed the deficit to 6-4 in following at bats. In the eighth, Minnesota took more distance by scoring four runs.

Jonathan Schoop started as second baseman for Baltimore and was 0-for-4. He was replaced by his brother Sharlon Schoop, who was 1-for-1.

Jonathan Schoop struckout in the first inning and hit a force play-grounder in the second at bat. In the fifth, Schoop grounded out and he struckout again to close the sixth inning.

In the top of the ninth inning, Sharlon replaced Jonathan as second baseman. He got his lone at bat in the bottom of the ninth. With a runner on first base and one out, he singled, but the two were left behind.

An inning earlier, the bottom of the eighth, Australian righthander Todd Van Steensel made his Spring Training-debut with the Twins. He retired the side in the only inning he threw, striking out one hitter after the first two batters had grounded out.

In 2012, the 27-year old Van Steensel pitched in the Dutch big league for Haarlem-based Kinheim. Van Steensel also pitched for the Australian National Team.

At Peoria, Seattle Mariners recorded a 7-3 victory at home against a split-squad of Chicago Cubs. Leading 3-1, Seattle rallied for four runs in the bottom of the eighth inning.

Curaçao-born Chris Pieters played for Chicago, while Aruba-born Eugene Helder got into action for Seattle.

In the bottom of the eighth inning, Pieters entered the game as new centerfielder for Chicago. In that same inning, Seattle rallied for four runs. After Robinson Cano had delivered a runscoring single, the bases got loaded. A run was then scored on a single by Kyle Seager, who was replaced by Helder as his pinch-runner on first base. A sacrifice fly by Andrew Romine accounted for the next run and the fourth run was added on a single by Mitch Haniger, but Helder stranded on second base.

In the top of the ninth inning, Helder became the new third baseman for Seattle. Pieters led off the at bat for Chicago and he reached on an infield-hit towards Helder in his lone at bat. He advanced on a single by Ali Solis and with one out, the bases got loaded. Pieters then scored on a single by Jacob Hannemann. Moments later, another run was scored on a walk, but that was to be it for the Cubs.

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