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Brinson, Pierre mourn tragic school shooting

MLB.com @JoeFrisaro

JUPITER, Fla. -- Marlins outfielder Lewis Brinson and team special instructor Juan Pierre spent Wednesday morning in the batting cages at the team's Spring Training complex.

In the afternoon, they each were dealing with an unspeakable tragedy in their home communities.

JUPITER, Fla. -- Marlins outfielder Lewis Brinson and team special instructor Juan Pierre spent Wednesday morning in the batting cages at the team's Spring Training complex.

In the afternoon, they each were dealing with an unspeakable tragedy in their home communities.

The mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., is close to the homes of Brinson and Pierre.

"We're in shock that something like that can happen," said Brinson, a native of Coral Springs. "It's such a safe community. That community is peace and quiet. I feel like people go there to raise families, the community is not really affected by stuff like that."

Douglas High School is about three miles from Brinson's alma mater, Coral Springs High.

"This is on TV," Brinson said. "I was kind of glued to the TV. I couldn't really believe what was going on. It was Douglas. It hit home. I played there many times. A lot of my friends went to that school. I know they're feeling it."

Pierre has lived in Parkland since 2006, selecting the area because it was quiet and he had a big back yard to put in a batting cage.

The shootings that killed 17 people took place about the time Pierre had picked up his younger children at school in Margate.

"My next door neighbor was one of the kids who had to hop the fence to get away," Pierre said. "It's just close to home. Unfortunately, we've heard about this a lot, dealing with schools. In that community, you wouldn't think something like that would happen."

Parkland is about 30 minutes south of the Marlins' Spring Training home in Jupiter.

Marlins TV analyst Todd Hollandsworth, who lives in Parkland, tweeted that a girl from his neighborhood was one of the lives lost.

Tweet from @hollytime28: #PrayForParkland we lost a beautiful girl from our neighborhood, no words....please, PLEASE pray for her family and all the families who���ve lost a life. God Bless you all!

The shootings took place at the school Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo attended.

Rizzo's thoughts with alma mater after shooting

"I saw his tweet," Brinson said of Rizzo. "I feel for him. I don't know if he knows anybody who goes there now. I'm sure he has ties to there still, with some of coaches or kids that go there now. My heart goes out to him. I know he's feeling it.

"It was tough. It's really sad that that happens again. It's something that's got to stop and something heavy-hearted. That was my rival high school. I used to play against them all the time. My thoughts and prayers go out to those families that lost those 17 people. They don't have anybody to go home to or wait for in the parking lot when they go to that school and it's just a sad day. My heart is real heavy right now."

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Miami Marlins