Friday, March 2, 2007

Ponson obtains visa

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Twins pitcher Sidney Ponson has obtained the proper work visa, clearing the veteran right-hander to participate in official spring training exhibition games, general manager Terry Ryan said this afternoon.

"It was a little awkward for us, but he really didn't get setback any because he was slated to pitch March 5 and he's still going to pitch March 5," Ryan said. "Now the visa issue is a dead issue."

Ponson, a native of Aruba, was originally scheduled to pitch in the minor-league "B" game on Monday. Ryan was not certain whether the field staff would keep Ponson on that schedule or shift him to the major-league game against Tampa Bay on Monday.

Ponson left camp Thursday to travel to the Bahamas to receive his visa from the U.S. consul. He originally was scheduled to obtain his visa on March 9, meaning he would have missed almost two weeks of Grapefruit League games.

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