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Updated: February 22nd, 2011 11:26am
Justin Morneau takes 40 swings in first spring-training workout

Justin Morneau takes 40 swings in first spring-training workout

by Phil Mackey
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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Minnesota Twins first baseman Justin Morneau participated in his first spring-training workout on Tuesday morning.

Morneau, wearing a protective helmet during batting practice for precautionary reasons, took 40 swings in a group that included Michael Cuddyer, Jim Thome and Jason Kubel.

Moreau hit five balls over the fence and kept a light mood, joking with teammates and coaches.

The first baseman also fielded groundballs, took throws from third baseman Danny Valencia and practiced turning double plays -- an activity Morneau says has triggered post-concussion symptoms in the past.

After the workout, Morneau spent 15 minutes chatting with manager Ron Gardenhire.

"Nice to see him back out on the field and feeling good, and that's what we talked about," Gardenhire said. "We talked a little bit about some of the situations that are going to come up here and how we're going to hand le them -- just get a feel for what his thoughts are. I told him what I wanted to see.

"It's a good thing to see Justin out there. He's got a smile on his face and he's excited about being out there and not worried about all the other stuff he's had to worry about for so long. Now it just gets to the point where the doctors finally release him to get in games, he's going to be available for live batting practice and all those things."

Gardenhire added, "I'm not going to sit and go ask him, 'How we doing today?' If there's any updates and he's not doing great one day, he'll come and tell me. But no, I'm not going to sit there and bother him with all that. I'm going to let him play."

Full-squad workouts begin on Wednesday.

Phil Mackey is a columnist for He co-hosts "Mackey & Judd" from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
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