PITTSBURGH (AP) -The Pittsburgh Pirates will break ground Tuesday on a Dominican Republic training center that will be similar in appearance to their minor league complex in Bradenton, Fla.
The site in El Toro will be the headquarters for the Pirates' Latin American operations. The Pirates have 20 scouts in nine countries in the region, including Mexico, Colombia, Nicaragua and Panama.
The president of the Dominican Republic, Leonel Fernandez Reyna, is expected to attend the groundbreaking ceremony on a 46-acre site recently purchased by the Pirates.
The complex will include two regulation playing fields, an infield training field and an observation tower. A clubhouse, office building, covered batting cages, pitching mounds and a dormitory that can house as many as 90 will be located next to the fields.
The complex is expected to be completed in about 18 months. The training facility the Pirates currently use in the Caribbean nation has only one field and no housing.
The Pirates' Dominican Summer League team will be based at the training center.
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