It seems like there’s always some sort of discussion about Pablo Sandoval’s weight when he arrives for Spring Training. This year, the discussion is positive as he’s shown up eight days early and appears to be in good shape.
We’d seen a variety of photos of him doing workouts during the offseason where he looked to have lost about 30 pounds as he prepared to make a comeback after playing in only three games last season. When he arrived at Jet Blue Park today, it appears as though he’s kept that off so far.
It’s also worth noting that he was taking swings from the right side in the cage, so he may be planning to continue switch hit this season. This could prove beneficial because his ability to hit from both sides of the plate was part of why the Red Sox signed him to a five year, $95 million deal back in 2014.
As he was taking his swings, he was in a group that included Brock Holt and Jackie Bradley Jr. among others. The grouping was somewhat interesting as Brock Holt is one of the players who could potentially compete against Panda for the starting spot at the hot corner.
It wasn’t his offense that lost Sandoval the starting gig last year, however, as his weight caused him to be extremely slow on defense with a limited range … something you can’t have when you’re playing third base. There’s no doubt that a lot of attention will be focused in on the slugger when he starts to participate in infielding drills.