LA CROSSE, Wis. -

"Welcome to La Crosse," Hall of Fame pitcher Bert Blyleven said as he walked off the bus.

Dozens of happy kids greeted him at a private event at the La Crosse Boys and Girls Club, a part of the Minnesota Twins' Winter Caravan Tour.

Blyleven, as well as pitchers Cole De Vries and Liam Hendriks, took the time to meet, greet, and sign autographs for kids in the after-school program.

Blyleven says it's part of an effort to show that La Crosse is part of "Twins Territory."

"Even though it's in Wisconsin, we have a lot of Twins fans here," Blyleven said. "My first [Winter Caravan] was 1970, so I've been through La Crosse many times."

"It's good to come into a place like this and raise awareness of the Twins and try to beat the Twins over the Brewers," said Hendriks, an Australian native.

"That's one thing that's funny with the kids, is you never quite know what you're going to get," said Cole De Vries.

The Twins' Winter Caravan is wrapping up, as Spring Training begins in three weeks.

"When the winter caravan goes along with Twins fest, it's always the smell of spring right ahead," Blyleven said.