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Dozier arrives at camp, to be eased into games

Second baseman had kidney stone removed on Tuesday
MLB.com @RhettBollinger

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- After missing the first three days of workouts because of a kidney stone, Twins second baseman Brian Dozier arrived on Wednesday and joked he felt lighter and ready to go.

Dozier described the experience as the most painful thing he'd ever gone through and had to have the 5-millimeter stone removed on Tuesday night. Dozier didn't participate in a full workout on Thursday as a result, but he was relieved to have the ordeal over with.

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- After missing the first three days of workouts because of a kidney stone, Twins second baseman Brian Dozier arrived on Wednesday and joked he felt lighter and ready to go.

Dozier described the experience as the most painful thing he'd ever gone through and had to have the 5-millimeter stone removed on Tuesday night. Dozier didn't participate in a full workout on Thursday as a result, but he was relieved to have the ordeal over with.

"For anyone who ever had a kidney stone, I feel for you, because it was the worst pain you'll ever have in your life," Dozier said. "It was in there for like five or six days, but it's out, and I'm happy right now. Everything is good."

Dozier is expected to resume full workouts on Thursday and is likely to be eased into games, as he's not expected to play in the Grapefruit League opener on Friday against the Red Sox at JetBlue Park or Saturday against the Orioles in Sarasota, Fla.

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"He didn't do a ton today, but you can tell he feels a lot better," Twins manager Paul Molitor. "We'll ease him into the mix here. I wasn't planning on playing him too soon anyways. So we'll give him a few days and see where he's at."

Dozier also comes to camp as an impending free agent with his contract set to expire after the season. He has been vocal about his desire to remain in Minnesota and sign an extension, but he said there's nothing new on that front.

"I don't know, man," Dozier said. "I don't really know what to tell you. We'll see."

Dozier, though, was relaxed enough to joke about that status, saying he missed the early part of camp for contract reasons and not because of the kidney stone.

"That's what this was -- a holdout," Dozier said with a laugh. "But it's all good. We'll see how it shakes out."

Tweet from @Twins: #TFW you get new leather on @wilsonballglove #GloveDay! pic.twitter.com/c8s5dh1Gtr

Twins Tidbits

??? The Twins don't plan to play any regulars in Thursday's exhibition game (5:05 p.m. CT) against the University of Minnesota. The lineup behind left-hander Stephen Gonsalves will be composed of center fielder Zack Granite, second baseman Gregorio Petit, shortstop Nick Gordon, designated hitter Chris Heisey, first baseman Brock Stassi, left fielder Nick Buss, right fielder Ryan LaMarre, catcher Jordan Pacheco and third baseman Taylor Featherston.

??? Former Twins first baseman and AL MVP Award winner Justin Morneau arrived at camp on Wednesday to serve as an instructor. Morneau rejoined the organization this offseason as a special assistant to the front office.

"I'm excited to have my old buddy in camp," Twins first baseman Joe Mauer said. "He's happy to be here, all smiles. It's just another guy in here who has a lot of experience. Been there, done that, and does it the right way. Same thing with [Michael] Cuddyer and Torii [Hunter] and LaTroy [Hawkins]. It's fun to have those guys around."

Tweet from @Twins: Q1: What advice do you have for rookie coach, Justin Morneau? Q2: What is it like to be Eddie Guardado?????????s boss? pic.twitter.com/XHyhVJY7b0

??? The Twins held their annual media day on Wednesday, with players having their photos taken for the upcoming season and participating in several video interviews on the field at Hammond Stadium.

Rhett Bollinger covers the Angels for MLB.com. He previously covered the Twins from 2011-18. Follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and Facebook.

Minnesota Twins, Brian Dozier