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Feb. 3, 2004 - 3:27 pm et
Pat Burrell began his two-week hitting session with Phillies instructors yesterday.
The Phillies wanted Burrell to report early to spring training to work on his swing after his disastrous 2003. "He came in with a completely different swing, as far as where he stands, where he's holding his hands," manager Larry Bowa said. "That's a tribute to him. He could have very easily sat his butt at home and said, 'I'll go out there Feb. 1 and start all over.' But he didn't." No one has ever questioned Burrell's work ethic. He'll have a bounce-back season in 2004, so he should be a bargain in fantasy leagues.
Feb. 17, 2004 - 4:15 am et
Manager Larry Bowa is prepared to bat Pat Burrell in the cleanup spot right from the start of the year if he has a good spring.
It seemed likely that Burrell would have to work his way up from the sixth spot, but he might not have to. Bowa wants Burrell batting fourth to break up lefties Jim Thome and Bobby Abreu. In that arrangement, Thome would bat third and Abreu fifth. If Burrell has a poor spring, Abreu would probably bat third and be followed by Thome and Mike Lieberthal.
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