Equipment drive to wrap eventful week

Rangers caravan will help victims of Dec. 26 tornadoes

Equipment drive to wrap eventful week

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers come out of their winter hibernation with a busy week of events that concludes with an equipment drive to benefit the victims of the tornadoes that struck North Texas last month. Other events include the annual Dr. Pepper Texas Rangers Award Dinner, FanFest, a mini-camp and multiple caravan stops.

The equipment drive will take place during the Rangers caravan stop from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. CT Sunday at the Academy Sports and Outdoors, 4920 North Garland Ave. in Garland. Elvis Andrus, Delino DeShields, Chris Gimenez and Ryan Rua are scheduled to appear.

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At that appearance, fans are encouraged to make donations of new and gently used sports equipment, which will go to the victims of the Dec. 26 tornadoes. Garland was one of the hardest-hit areas by the storms.

The awards dinner is scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday at the Gaylord Texan Resort. Among the honorees are Prince Fielder (Player of the Year), Shawn Tolleson (Pitcher), DeShields (Rookie), Andrus (Harold McKinney Good Guy), and Rougned Odor (Richard Durrett Hardest Working Man).

FanFest will take place from 9-4 p.m. on Saturday at Globe Life Park in Arlington. A complete listing of player autograph sessions will be announced later this week. Other events include question-and-answer sessions with Rangers officials, photo opportunities, free play in the Kids Zone and tours of the ballpark.

The mini-camp will run Tuesday through Friday at the ballpark and at a local area high school. Most of the players will either be those with two or fewer years of service time or who were in the Minor Leagues last year. New pitching coach Doug Brocail and hitting coach Anthony Iapoce will be there.

The 14 pitchers attending the camp are Andrew Faulkner, Chi Chi Gonzalez, Miles Jaye, Luke Jackson, Ariel Jurado, Phil Klein, Frank Lopez, Nick Martinez, Yohander Mendez, Jesus Pirela, Anthony Ranaudo, Connor Sadzeck, Dillon Tate and Scott Williams.

The eight position players are catchers Brett Nicholas and Jose Trevino, infielders Joey Gallo and Jurickson Profar, and outfielders Lewis Brinson, Ryan Cordell, Nomar Mazara and Ryan Rua.

The Rangers' caravan continues with a stop at the Academy Sports and Outdoors at 8050 Forest Lane in Dallas from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. Broadcasters Eleno Ornelas and Jose Guzman are scheduled to attend along with Martinez and Profar.

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On Thursday, first baseman Mitch Moreland and broadcaster Tom Grieve are among those who will be at the Academy store at 1101 West Arbrook Blvd. in Arlington. They will be signing autographs from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.

On Sunday from 1:30 to 2:30, Shin-Soo Choo and pitcher Sam Dyson will be at the Academy Store at 5836 North Tarrant Parkway in Fort Worth.

Also on Friday, the Rangers have scheduled groundbreaking ceremonies for the new Rangers MLB Urban Youth Academy in West Dallas. On Sunday, the Rangers are conducting their second annual free clinic for area youth coaches at Globe Life Park. The clinic runs from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and for more information call 817-273-5297.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.