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Dunbar baseball team takes home plate with one less player

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - It's been a tough week for a Lexington high school baseball team after a teammate suffered a serious injury while on spring break.

But Tuesday night, they returned to their home field and joined fans in honoring him.

It was Dunbar High School's first home game since 18-year-old Travis Gaines was injured in Florida after diving into some shallow surf.

Even though Gaines wasn't on the field, his teammates made sure he still had a big role in the game.

"He for sure is dearly missed," said Coach Larry Poynter, with the Dunbar High School baseball team.

Since Travis is still recovering in a Florida hospital, his team came up with a way to bring Travis Gaines on the field with them, wearing shirts with his name and number 19.

"It's just a tribute for Travis," said Coach Poynter.

Players tell us that Travis was in the back of their minds and warm-ups in every catch, out, and throw.

The play of the night for his teammates and coach would be to bring Travis home.

"When that time comes, we'll deal with it together," said Coach Poynter. "And we'll have a plan together."

But the game must go on, which is something that's not easy for Travis' teammates to wrap their gloves around.

"Travis was great young man. He was the first guy in the dugout patting everyone on the rear-end," said Coach Poynter. "He was the type of kid that was a coach's dream. He worked hard and loved the game."

His jersey hangs on the field's fence as a reminder of who they are playing for. And just as the sun set, they took the field for themselves, and of course, Travis.

Before the game started, an announcement was made, thanking everyone for their prayers and support. They also mentioned that you can donate to the Travis Gaines fund at any Fifth-Third Bank location.

We are told Gaines is expected to be moved to a Louisville rehab center soon.


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