- The Washington Times - Sunday, February 18, 2007

An innocent batting practice session late last season converted right-hander Jason Bergmann into a big Washington Capitals fan.

Caps All-Star left wing Alex Ovechkin and a few of his teammates took a couple of hacks in the batting cage before a September game last year. That’s all it took for Bergmann, who grew up a New York Rangers fan in New Jersey. Bergmann attended a Caps game against the Philadelphia Flyers at Verizon Center in early December and they even put his face on the jumbotron. Bergmann said he also went to a Caps game in Philly.

“Sweet seats, right on the ice,” he said. When asked if they showed his face on the jumbotron there, he said, “They wouldn’t know me.” …

Outfielder Ryan Church brings the latest “American Sportsman” installment. With yesterday’s workout pushed back an hour, Church had a chance to get in a little fishing in at small pond. Church didn’t have his line in the water for more than a couple minutes before he landed a decent largemouth bass. Church said he hooked a 65-pound salmon on a fishing trip to Alaska.

“It didn’t fight a lot, it must have been tired,” Church said. “I guess it was tired from swimming upstream.”

TEMPERATURECHECK

PITCHERS ATTENDANCE (UP)

Visas solved, Dominican arms gain entry.

CAMP MONOTONY (DOWN)

Should end with position players reporting today.

MORE ROLL IN (UP)

Thurston, Lombard, Womack report.

WEATHER DELAY (DOWN)

Morning workout pushed back an hour because of cold.

By the numbers

6Dominican pitchers who had their visa problems resolved yesterday

8Dominican-born pitchers invited to spring training

OVERHEARD

“The ideal guy should be able to play shortstop. And obviously, if you can play shortstop, then the other positions become easier for you. That’s what you’re looking for, a guy who can play shortstop defensively. And a guy that can come off the bench and give you a quality at-bat.”

— Nationals manager Manny Acta (top right) on what he’s looking for in a backup infielder.

SEVEN-DAY SCHEDULE

Today: Pitchers and catchers workout, 9 a.m.

Tomorrow: Pitchers and catchers workout, 9 a.m., position players report to camp.

Tuesday: Pitchers and catchers workout, 9 a.m., position players take physicals.

Wednesday: Full-squad workout, 9 a.m.

Thursday: Full-squad workout, 9 a.m.

Friday: Full-squad workout, 9 a.m.

Saturday: Full-squad workout, 9 a.m.

HOW TO GET TO SPACE COAST STADIUM

From Orlando/North: Take Route 528 East (Bee Line Expressway) 25 miles to I-95 South. Exit I-95 South at Fiske Boulevard (Exit 195). Proceed south on Fiske Boulevard/Stadium Parkway to the stadium. Approx. time: 45 minutes.

From Melbourne/South: Take I-95 North to Wickham Road (Exit 191) and turn left. Turn right on Lake Andrew Drive and follow to the stadium. Approx. time: 20 minutes.

TODAY’S WEATHER

Washington: Partly cloudy/wind, 33 degrees.

Viera: Partly cloudy, 59 degrees.

— Ken Wright


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