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Time for another beginning: Miami Hurricanes baseball on the horizon with preseason festivities

The Canes baseball season is nearly upon us.

As we reflect on the passing of UM Hurricanes legend Ron Fraser, we also can look forward to the coming season, which begins Feb. 15 with a three-game home series against Rutgers. You know that Coach Fraser loved this time of year, and I'm sure Coach Jim Morris can't wait to begin after a disappointing ending to 2012.

    Today marks the opening of preseason practice for the 2013 season. The season begins Feb. 15, when Rutgers comes to Alex Rodriguez Park at Mark Light Field for a three-game series.

    Get your calendars out and mark these dates: 

    *Thursday, Feb. 7 for the First Pitch Banquet

    * Friday, Feb. 8 for the UM Baseball Golf Tournament

    * Saturday, Feb. 9 for the Alumni Game

    The First Pitch Banquet, per UM, will feature a speakers panel comprised of UBaseball alumni Yonder Alonso (San Diego Padres), Jon Jay (St. Louis Cardinals) and Chris Perez (Cleveland Indians). In addition to the panel, there will be an auction featuring memorabilia and other Hurricanes merchandise, a presentation by Morris and a multi-course dinner. The reception, to be held at the multipurpose room inside the fieldhouse adjacent to the BankUnited Center, begins at 6 p.m. To purchase tickets, contact the Hurricane Club at 305-284-6699.

    The golf tourney, presented by the First National Bank of South Miami, will be at the Melreese Country Club. Fans can enjoy a day of golf with the head coach alongside current and former UM players. For more information, contact Celebrity International at 305-255-3500 or email tod@ci-mgt.com.

     The team's annual Fan Fest and Alumni Game will be at A-Rod Park. Pregame festivities start at 4 p.m., including an autograph session with players and coaches, inflatables and face painting for children -- and more. The game begins at 6 p.m. and will be between the 2013 Canes and a team made up of former UM stars. 


 Visitation For Ron Fraser will be held from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. on Sun., Jan. 27 at Stanfill Funeral Homes in Miami (10545 S. Dixie Highway). A funeral mass will be held at 10 a.m. on Mon., Jan. 28 at St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church in Southwest Ranches (5601 S. Flamingo Road).

 The burial will be private for the Fraser Family in Ron’s hometown of Nutley, N.J.

 “A Celebration of the Life of Ron Fraser” will be held Sat., Feb. 23 on the University of Miami campus. Details will be announced at a later date. The Fraser Family be in attendance and will receive friends following the program. Afterwards, the celebration will move to Alex Rodriguez Park at Mark Light Field for Miami’s baseball game against Milwaukee. The game has been designated as the “Remembering Ron Fraser” game, with game proceeds donated to the Ron Fraser Wizard Fund.

  To me, there's nothing like taking in a beautiful South Florida day at The Light and watching college baseball. And if you don't mind the lines, there's always those great shakes! Seriously, I am looking very much looking forward to baseball.