The clock read 1:05 p.m. and school was in session.
The classroom was the top step of the visitors' dugout at Camelback Ranch, where the Giants were playing the White Sox on Monday. The teacher was Shawon Dunston. The only student was Roger Kieschnick, a 26-year-old outfielder and one of the few power threats in the Giants' farm system.
Once the game began, Dunston and Kieschnick talked hitting. There was no lesson plan. In fact, the whole talk was impromptu. They just examined each situation as it unfolded on the field, with Dunston imparting wisdom.
His method was Socratic: "OK, 1-0 count and the pitcher throws a curveball on the outside corner. Do you swing at it?"
Four innings into the game, Dunston summoned a substitute teacher, Jeff Kent, who provided his own take on the game situations before them. On it went until the sixth inning, when manager Bruce Bochy sent Kieschnick into the game to play right field.
Kieschnick's dugout education program was not unique. A great benefit of spring training is the wealth of expertise that teams bring to camp with their coaches and special spring instructors, such as Kent, J.T. Snow, Will Clark, Robb Nen and Randy Winn.
"We do that every day, some shorter and some longer, some exposed to the media and some not," Kent said. "That's one of the bigger reasons a lot of the former players are here, so we can pass on some stories, knowledge and tidbits of information that may help them click."


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