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Saltdogs Around the Bases: Minier used to seeing his parents, even when they're not there
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SALTDOGS AROUND THE BASES

Saltdogs Around the Bases: Minier used to seeing his parents, even when they're not there

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Kansas City vs. Lincoln, 6.27

Lincoln's pitcher Greg Minier throws a pitch June 27 at Haymarket Park.

Lincoln Saltdogs pitcher Greg Minier is so accustomed to his parents being in the stands that he has started picturing them in the seats as he peers out from the dugout.

“It was funny, we were in Gary (Indiana) last week during our road trip,” Minier said. “I was sitting in the stands doing our (pitching) charts and there was a family that looked similar to mine sitting a couple rows up in front of me. I looked at this guy and he had salt and pepper hair just like my dad and I'm like, 'Dad?' and he turned around and had glasses on and I'm like, 'Oh, that's not my dad, OK, cool.'”

Then the Saltdogs returned home for a three-game series against the Gary SouthShore RailCats and Minier saw the same salt-and-peppered hair man, or so he thought.

During the fifth inning of Sunday's 2-0 victory over Gary SouthShore, the Saltdogs exited the dugout to honor the military in attendance. Minier was clapping his hands and scanned the Haymarket crowd, before his eyes focused back to a couple in the crowd — his parents, Ray and Jeneen.

“Fast forward to Sunday … and I see the same guy with salt-and-pepper hair and I say, 'Oh, that's the same guy I saw in Gary, wait a minute, that's my parents. That's my parents, Oh!'”

At that point, (Saltdogs manager) Brett Jodie said, 'If you want to go talk to them, go talk to them.”

“It was a really cool experience,” Minier said.

Ray and Jeneen Minier, of Oxnard, California, will be in attendance for Wednesday's contest against the Chicago Dogs, when their son takes the mound with a 7-2 record and 2.89 earned run average. It is also Ray Minier's 62nd birthday.

“This is the first time my parents have seen me play at the professional level,” Greg Minier said. “I'm really excited that they get to see this pay off. They've been at every one of my games since I was 5 years old and finally get to see them see me play and make money playing. I'm sure it's very gratifying to them as well.”

Minier has been stellar since joining the Saltdogs' starting rotation, recording a decision in all nine of his starts after 12 appearances from the bullpen.

“It's not really much of a change, but being more focused for longer,” Minier said. “I just make sure I can control everything I can before I release that ball.”

Quick hits

Time changes: With students returning to school in Lancaster County, all Saltdogs games Monday-Thursday will start at 6 p.m. Lincoln's games for Friday and Saturday's will continue to start at 7 p.m. Due to radio scheduling conflicts, there will be no Saltdogs pregame show during midweek games at Haymarket Park.

Big return: Josh Altmann returns to the lineup Tuesday as Lincoln begins a three-game series with Chicago after an injury sustained during the last Saltdogs road trip. The Lincoln shortstop, who leads the Saltdogs in home runs (21) and RBIs (59), has not been in the lineup since Aug. 11 after Lincoln wrapped up a three-game series in Milwaukee.

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