Major League Baseball is back in Sarasota as the Baltimore Orioles’ 2010 spring training campaign gets underway. With young studs like Adam Jones and Matt Wieters, familiar faces such as Nick Markakis and Brian Roberts, and welcome additions including Kevin Millwood, Garrett Atkins, and a returning Miguel Tejada, the Orioles look primed to cause some damage in the potent AL East. The club’s local impact, however, extends beyond the Major League camp.

Cal Ripken, the Orioles’ iconic Hall of Fame shortstop, has opened a local branch of his Cal Ripken Youth Academy at Twin Lakes Park. In a statement celebrating the move from Fort Lauderdale, Ripken said:

I am thrilled that the Orioles have found a new comprehensive Spring Training home and that Ripken Baseball will be a part of the facility in Sarasota. I have always liked the idea of the kids playing side by side with the professional ballplayers as it really enhances their experience. We are excited to partner with the Orioles and bring our youth academy model to the Sarasota community.

Laurel Park is short bike ride, drive, or bus ride from all the action.

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