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Red Sox Hold First Workout; Lester Wants to Stay in Boston

(AP Photo/Steven Senne)

FORT MYERS, Florida (WGGB) — A leisurely workout marked the official beginning of the Boston Red Sox’ defense of their 2013 World Series Title.

After pitchers and catchers reported over the weekend, the Red Sox held their first official workout of Spring Training Monday in Fort Myers, Florida.

Under sunny skies at JetBlue Field, with temperatures in the 80s, pitchers were divided into groups to take bullpen side sessions and pitchers’ fielding practice. They warmed with long toss, and some began the season’s first bullpen throws. Meanwhile, others practiced come-backers, covering first, and basic fielding drills to get the pitchers back into the groove.

Six catchers, including A.J. Pierzynski, Ryan Lavarnway, David Ross, Dan Butler, and Chrisitan Vazquez, have joined the pitchers down in camp. They took batting practice after field work and working with pitchers.

A few big names are getting an early start to 2014 in Fort Myers. Dustin Pedroia, Mike Napoli, and Xander Bogaerts are already there, and took batting practice and did fielding drills Monday. Pedroia told reporters his thumb has healed nicely following offseason surgery.

More good news for Red Sox fans came from Jon Lester, who confirmed that he would take a pay cut in order to stay with Boston. The starter expressed his love for the organization, but added that he is not ready to acclimate to a new team, teammates, and environment if he were to go elsewhere when he becomes a free agent at the end of the 2014 season.

“This is all I’ve known,” Lester told ESPN. “I don’t like change. I don’t like going into new places that I have to learn.

Lester showed his value throughout the Sox’ World Series run, including winning both starts against the St. Louis Cardinals, holding them to one run and nine hits over 15.1 innings. He struck out 15 batters, while walking just one in those starts.

It’s a positive sign for the Red Sox core players, who hope to bring Boston another World Series Title in 2014.


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