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Berrios, Baez, Bauer host clinic in Puerto Rico

Trio of MLB All-Stars takes field with about 150 children
January 5, 2019

BAYAMON, Puerto Rico -- On the eve of Three Kings Day, a major holiday in Latin America marked by festivals and children eagerly awaiting presents, Twins ace Jose Berrios gave kids in his native Puerto Rico the gift of baseball.With assists from Cubs infielder Javier Baez and Indians starter Trevor

BAYAMON, Puerto Rico -- On the eve of Three Kings Day, a major holiday in Latin America marked by festivals and children eagerly awaiting presents, Twins ace Jose Berrios gave kids in his native Puerto Rico the gift of baseball.
With assists from Cubs infielder Javier Baez and Indians starter Trevor Bauer, the gift took the form of a youth clinic in Berrios' and Baez's hometown of Bayamon on Saturday.
Approximately 150 children took part in the La Makina Baseball Clinic, held at a baseball complex in the Flamboyan Gardens sector of the city. Divided into groups of 50, they took turns learning pitching mechanics from Berrios and Bauer, and fielding ground balls with Baez.
"The main thing is reaching out to a child," said Berrios, 24, in Spanish. "That the child can spend time with us and interact with us up close. I grew wishing to be where I am now and with God's help I made it. I want to give kids what I longed for when I was a kid."
After the clinic, the three All-Stars took photos with the participants, each of whom left with a backpack, batting gloves, Twins T-shirts and caps, and, of course, a big smile.
"It's exciting to see the kids' faces when they see you and you can appreciate their excitement," Baez said in Spanish. "I went through that stage."

Bauer, who also visited Puerto Rico in April when the Twins and Indians played a regular-season series in the capital of San Juan, took the opportunity to practice his Spanish and answered questions through an interpreter.
It is Berrios' goal to seize every opportunity to share his love and knowledge of baseball with the next generation.
"Really, every time we get the chance to do it, we want to do it. I know it's a great experience for them. It's a privilege to be able to contribute to the learning and development of these kids," he said.

Amanda Rivera is a reporter for MLB.com.