Surrounded by snow and hundreds of fans at Fenway Park, the truck carrying the Boston Red Sox’s spring training equipment departed Beantown yesterday at noon en route to Fort Myers with 20,400 baseballs, more than 1,000 bats and – of course – a near-endless supply of sunflower seeds and bubble gum.
According to an article by Steve Silva on Boston.com, “The Truck” (as it’s called) is an 18-wheeler driven by Al Hartz of New England Household Moving and Storage. It will take two and a half days to drive the 1,480 miles from Fenway Park to jetBlue Park. It’s the 17th consecutive year Hartz has made the trek.
Even though the bulk of the Red Sox equipment won’t arrive until this weekend, jetBlue Park is already a hive of activity.
At least 20 players, along with most of the team’s medical staff and some Red Sox front office personnel are at jetBlue Park getting an early start to the season. Pitchers and catchers are required to report on February 20, 2015 while the position players need to report four days later on February 24. The first full-team workout is on February 25.
The strong early showing from the players may be a result of the fact the Red Sox were the last place team in the American League East division in 2014, finishing 25 games back of the Baltimore Orioles. The team had a record of 71-91 last year.
With so many players arriving for informal work-outs 10 to 12 days early for spring training, the team is demonstrating how serious they are about regaining their form in the hopes of winning the World Series this year.
Boston last won the World Series in 2013.
The Red Sox first Grapefruit League game is on March 5, 2015 against the Minnesota Twins at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers. Its first game at jetBlue Park is on March 6, 2015 at 1:05pm against the Miami Marlins.