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Jason Varitek back as strong as ever

Updated: February 21, 2011, 2:33 AM ET
By Joe McDonald | ESPNBoston.com

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- On the final day of the 2010 season for the Boston Red Sox, manager Terry Francona decided to pinch hit for Jason Varitek so the veteran catcher could be recognized by his teammates and the fans.

The 37,453 in attendance at Fenway Park gave Varitek a standing ovation, and even some of the New York Yankees gave their acknowledgment. It seemed quite possible that Varitek's playing career was over.

"I know when we took him out of last year's game to get a little ...

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