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Kelly relishes chance to pitch in front of dad

Cubs righty sees action vs. father Pat's Double-A Reds club
MLB.com @CarrieMuskat

MESA, Ariz. -- Casey Kelly may lobby the Cubs to let him pitch every time they face the Reds this spring. It gives his dad, Pat, who is manager of the Reds' Double-A team, a chance to watch him.

When the Cubs faced the Reds in Mesa on Friday, Casey tweeted a photo of the two: "Very lucky to have @pdk41 as my pops and even more lucky to be playing against his team in spring training"

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MESA, Ariz. -- Casey Kelly may lobby the Cubs to let him pitch every time they face the Reds this spring. It gives his dad, Pat, who is manager of the Reds' Double-A team, a chance to watch him.

When the Cubs faced the Reds in Mesa on Friday, Casey tweeted a photo of the two: "Very lucky to have @pdk41 as my pops and even more lucky to be playing against his team in spring training"

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This is one of the few springs that Casey and Pat have been in the same state.

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"I don't think he ever saw me pitch live -- maybe a couple times when we played them," Casey Kelly said of his days with the Padres. "Last year, I was in Florida with the Braves. It was kind of cool to have him out there and watch me pitch."

Tweet from @JustCK3: Very lucky to have @pdk41 as my pops and even more lucky to be playing against his team in spring training pic.twitter.com/BEFrgua0hg

Plus, Pat Kelly, 61, offers his son a few pointers when he can. Pat's Major League career consisted of three games in 1980 with the Blue Jays. A catcher, he made his debut in May 1980, and played his final game five days later. This year will be his third as the Pensacola manager.

Casey remembers visiting his dad in the Minor Leagues every summer.

"I'd hang out with his team all summer," Casey said. "I was hitting in the cage, fielding ground balls, but I thought it was fun. I was out there playing around. Once I got to high school and started taking it seriously, he'd help me out, hitting in the cage, thinking about different gameplans in the box. He's definitely helped me in my baseball career."

The younger Kelly was an infielder when he was a first-round Draft pick by the Red Sox in 2008, and was then converted to pitcher. His father was part of that conversation.

"He always wanted me to be a catcher when I was growing up," Casey said. "But I said I was too much of an athlete to be a catcher."

Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast.

Chicago Cubs, Casey Kelly