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Spring training leaves MLB players and workers struggling with allergies

Baseball players spend a lot of time outside during the spring and summer, when seasonal allergies are the worst.

When Major League Baseball teams flea to warmer weather for spring training, they leave behind, in some cases, miserable winters and regions of the country where the weather may not always be desirable. What many of these areas do have, though, are conditions that suppress allergens found naturally in the environment. As such, many need to remember to bring their allergy medications with them to Arizona and Florida in February.

Comcast Sports Net Bay Area reports that many members of the Oakland Athletics had to wince through swollen eyes during their team picture taken earlier this week. Many of the players, team staff and media members were afflicted by one of the worst days of the year in Arizona for those with allergies.

Another group that has fought through allergies are MLB groundskeepers, who often are not as heralded for their work in keeping America's past-time active throughout the summer. One groundskeeper recently told The New York Times that he spends so much time at the ballpark that his daughter did not immediately understand the true nature of his work.

"When my girls were little, my wife was driving by the ballpark, and the oldest one pointed and said, 'Hey look, that’s where Daddy lives,'" Boston Red Sox director of grounds David Mellor told the newspaper. "That really bothered me."

Mellor's dedication is even more notable given the fact that he has an allergy to grass. He says that despite suffering from those symptoms, he remains undeterred. Many other players likely experience these same symptoms, particularly at the start of the season when allergens are most common in the environment.

As spring's clutches envelope most of the southern United States and leave northerners in anticipation of what is to come, allergy sufferers should stock up on medications and keep their houses sealed whenever possible, to prevent pollen and other allergens from entering their residences.

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