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Indians Spring Training Behind the Scenes: Olympic come backs and stray dogs

By Stephanie Storm Published: February 21, 2014

It was a quiet day on the field at Indians camp Thursday with nothing much out of the norm happening save for news that reliever Matt Capps was being shut down for a couple weeks with a strained right shoulder.

But it proved to be a spirited one in the clubhouse as many players found themselves wrapped up in the world of the Sochi Winter Olympics.

In the early morning, a majority of the-big screen TV’s in the clubhouse were tuned to women’s figure skating. Later, in the early afternoon when the players returned from their two-hour workout, many were quickly glued to the thrilling end of the woman’s hockey gold medal game.

Understandably, Canadian pitcher and new Tribe closer David Axford had a special rooting interest.

Ironically, There were about seven minutes left in the hockey game with the U.S. owning what seemed at the time to be a comfortable 2-0 advantage while reporters were finishing up interviews for the day. Someone mentioned it looked like the American women had the game in the hand when Axford quipped: “Plenty of time left.”

Within minutes, Axford’s faith in his countrywomen was rewarded with a momentum-shifting goal with three and a half minutes to go, making it a one-goal game. When the American’s missed an empty-net goal due to the puck banging of the post, it seemed to give Canada a lift. With 54.6 seconds left in regulation, another Canadian scored again to tie the game and then the Canadians went on to win in sudden death overtime.

Afterwards, Axford and “adopted” fellow countryman and catcher Luke Carlin (who is U.S. born but grew up in Quebec) celebrated via Twitter.

@CarlinsCorner: Great celebrating a canada gold w/ a fellow countrymen @JohnAxford #GoCanadaGo

HOME FOR SPRING - For dog lovers like me (I run my own one-woman Saint Bernard rescue) , I defy you to try not letting out an “aww” over this baseball dog story (two of my favorite subjects in one little note!)

While friendly stray dogs have been all the rage in Sochi, another cute little fellow here in Arizona is making plenty of his own headlines this week.

A white, curly-haired stray that was found wandering around the Maryvale Baseball Park on the west side of Phoenix, has become the Milwaukee Brewers spring training mascot.

Named “Hank” after Milwaukee baseball legend Hank Aaron, the puppy was taken to the vet by a member of the team’s front office staff for necessary shots and a much needed bath and has even been outfitted with his own tiny Brewers jersey.

The adorable pooch spends his days roaming around the team’s offices and playing fields. At night, he makes the trip home with members of the organization, then heads back to the park the next day.

Not a bad existance if you can get it.

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