Mar 9, 2010, 4:00 AM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Stephen Strasburg and Chien-Ming Wang have turned Viera into this spring's hot spot.
VIERA, Fla. — For 17 years, this little planned community on Florida's east coast has been the last outpost of the Grapefruit League. Nearly an hour from any other big-league camp, Viera might as well have been named Neptune for its remote location. Some teams wouldn't make the trip here to play exhibition games. Others would reluctantly agree but send only a roster of major-league reserves and minor-league washouts. National media outlets? They wouldn't be caught dead among the cow pastures and brush fires that surrounded Space Coast Stadium.
Over time, though, this little hamlet has grown into a legitimate destination. Homes, golf courses, shopping centers and government offices have sprung up and enticed residents and commerce alike to set up shop here. The cows have disappeared. The brush fires are no more. And the locals suddenly have to deal with the real result of population growth: traffic.
It's probably coincidence, but for the first time in its 17 years of existence, Viera also finds itself one of the state's hottest destinations for baseball fans, executives and reporters. All of aRead more »
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
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