A few notes from Ft. Myers this morning:
- Julio Lugo said he will wait and see how Spring Training goes before potentially asking for a trade. According to Nick Cafardo, Lugo is 100 percent healthy and added 10 pounds of muscle over the offseason.
- Also in Cafardo's notes package, Michael Bowden was a "star" at API over the offseason. Bowden has bulked up to a little over 230 pounds, which should benefit the young righty.
- Takaishi Saito is the new No. 24 on the Red Sox. As you all can remember, the last player to have No. 24 was ... ummm ... what's his name again? Crap. I forget. I'm pretty sure he's still a free agent though...
- On a more personal note, I love the Extra Bases blog because they usually have at least one video of Amalie Benjamin per day. Although the audio has sucked on all the videos of her, I can't take my eyes off the video.
- Bob Ryan writes a nice column on our lil' slugger Dustin Pedroia. Did we ever figure out if Pedroia was the smallest MVP winner ever? I think he's close.
- Cafardo has a piece about one of the best closers in baseball, Jonathan Papelbon. I really wish we sign this guy for many, many more years.
- The Official Sox Beater Writer of OTM (that'd be Amalie, duh) notes that JD Drew still has back problems. I'm pretty worried about Drew. How does back stiffness last for an entire offseason? There has to be some major issue that either doctors aren't dealing with or didn't see. Drew said the MRI last year revealed only "what he already knew." That's bad news to me. This gets bumped up to No. 1 on the "things to watch this spring" list. I have a bad feeling.
- Did anyone see the really skinny guy at Sox camp yesterday? They say it's David Ortiz, but I'm not convinced. Where'd the Cookie Monster go? In all honesty, Ortiz looks great and yes, I am going to call him skinny because the guy did some great work over the offseason. Ortiz is going to mash this year.
- WEEI reported the other day that Sox catcher George Kottaras will not play for Team Canada in the World Baseball Classic so he can focus on winning the backup catcher job. Good idea, Georgy.