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Archer gains extra appreciation for military

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Rays pitcher Chris Archer enjoyed an enriching experience just prior to Spring Training, when he paid a visit to Fort Bragg, the renown Army installation located in Fayetteville, N.C.

"FOX Sports told me the details about it, and it was in North Carolina, about an hour away from where I live, so I had to jump on an opportunity, because I never really interacted with the military before," Archer said. "And obviously, I had an appreciation. But it magnified after my visit."

Among the others making the visit were Mike Dunn of the Marlins, Gabe Kapler (former player and current FOX Sports TV analyst), Royce Clayton (former player), Chris Hammond (former player) and Bob Brenly (D-backs announcer and former manager).

"I now have a greater appreciation and respect for what those guys do on a day-to-day basis, hearing personal stories of why they joined," Archer said. "What they plan on doing in the future. What all goes on at a military base. I mean, it was cool for me. It was a great experience."

Bill Chastain is a reporter for
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