Curt Schilling went on the attack Sunday night after seeing vulgar tweets about his daughter, a high school senior whom Schilling congratulated for deciding to play softball at Salve Regina University next year.

One of the most offensive tweeters, identified as Adam Nagel, a student at Brookdale Community College in New Jersey who hosts a sports talk show on the school’s radio station, was suspended for his actions.

The school announced the discipline on Facebook, writing:

Students and community members have rightfully expressed concerns regarding recent social media comments made by a Brookdale student.

The Twitter comments posted by this student are unacceptable and clearly violate the standards of conduct that are expected of all Brookdale students.

The student has been summarily suspended and will be scheduled for a conduct hearing where further disciplinary action will be taken. The Brookdale Police are actively investigating this matter. Brookdale takes this behavior very seriously and does not tolerate any form of harassment.

Our sincerest apologies to Gabby Schilling. Her achievement should be celebrated and not clouded by offensive comments.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Spar

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Dustin Pedroia seems pleased these days.

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Dustin Pedroia seems pleased these days.

The latest bit of good news was clubhouse manager Tommy McLaughlin presenting the second baseman with the stickers for the handle end of his bats. The excitement was only amped up upon seeing the stickers image that had a silouette image of Sasquatch with the number “15” in the background.

But the true elation for Pedroia is not having to show up each morning and get treatment, and then actually swinging a baseball bat with a confidence he hasn’€™t had since 2011.

“I feel normal,” he said. “I can tell just picking up a bat my hand strength is back. That’s the most important part to me. When you grab a bat, how does it feel? Can you manipulate where you want to hit the ball? It’s all back.

“I knew before I got here. You could tell. Balls come off the bat different. It sounds different. If I’m fooled and I’m out in front I had the strength to flip it the other way or still turn on it. Those are the things I couldn’t do. ‘€¦ My swing is normal. My follow through is normal. There’s finish.”

The difference in the physical security was evident from his very first outside batting practice at Fenway South, when he purposely unloaded on the high left field wall on Field 2.

“How did it look? I’m not messing around,” Pedroia said regarding his initial BP salvo.

The plan for recovery last year didn’€™t work out. He didn’€™t have his UCL (thumb) surgery until November, and then there was the natural recovery process. It all went really awry during the Red Sox‘€™ first homestand when the thumb/wrist was aggravated, setting him back once again for an entire season.

This time around, however, he got the “release” on his wrist in September, allowing for the kind of normal offseason that is evidently paying off in the early days of camp.

“A lot of people say my UCL surgery since I played the whole year, it would take a year to feel normal. That’s the waking up and not feeling stiff,” he explained. ‘€œThey said it would take a while to get your hand strength back. And then I had the wrist.

“At the end of October I woke up and I was like, ‘Man, my thumbs not stiff. My strength is back.’ It just took a year. ‘€¦ I’m back to being normal. There are no issues.”

But while Pedroia is at peace with his current lot in life, there is still some bristling when it comes to the projection of his power.

“I don’t care. Numbers are numbers,” said Pedroia, who hit a combined 16 home runs over the past two injury-plagued seasons. “We’re here to win the World Series. I don’t care about any of that. If people don’t know that by now ‘€¦ We won the World Series and I hit nine home runs and everyone said I lost my power. Well, I’ll lose my power if I win the World Series. What is everyone’s job here? Win. We don’t give a crap about anything else.”

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

FORT MYERS, Fla.

Michael Chavis celebrates being selected by the Red Sox in last June's draft with former MLB commissioner Bud Selig. (Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

Michael Chavis celebrates being selected by the Red Sox in last June’s draft with former MLB commissioner Bud Selig. (Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

FORT MYERS, Fla. — With all the talk about Yoan Moncada — the 19-year-old Cuban who is on the verge of signing minor-league deal with a $31.5 signing bonus with the Red Sox — it’s interesting to note there’s another infielder, just 2 1/2 months older than Moncada already walking through Red Sox camp carrying a fair amount of expectations.

“I think it’s pretty cool,” said the Red Sox first-round pick last year, Michael Chavis, of the Moncada deal. “I try not to get wrapped up in the money concept, but if the point is to go out and get the best players possible, why not?

“He might be 19, but I’ve seen how he handles himself and I’ve seen him and I’ve seen how he handles himself. He’s very mature as a person. Obviously he’s shown himself on the field, so I don’t think the age really matters. Wasn’t [Ken] Griffey like 19 when he was in the Show. It’s proven that you can be young and play in the Show. It’s just about talent level and I think he’ll be just fine.”

It was just about eight months ago that Chavis was the teenager put under the microscope, having inked a $1,870,500 signing bonus after being selected out of Sprayberry Senior (GA) High with the 26th overall pick.

Yoan Moncada spent the day with Red Sox personnel at JetBlue Park Wednesday. (WEEI.com)

Yoan Moncada spent the day with Red Sox personnel at JetBlue Park Wednesday. (WEEI.com)

But now, the hype has given way to Moncada.

One of the topic of conversation following around the Cuban infielder is how physically put together he is for his age. But the stocky Chavis points suggests such size shouldn’t be shocking for kids their age.

“Walk in the locker room. We’ve got a bunch of big guys,” the 5-foot-10, 190-pound Chavis said. “Every time you see a bigger younger guy they’re going to have questions and stuff like that. But they’re just looking for reasons why he’s so talented. People never want to accept they put in hard work and it’s a talented kid.”

What’s also interesting to think about is the future of both players considering they could be, at some point, sharing the same major league infield.

Moncada is projected to play either second or third base, while Chavis enters his first professional spring training as a third baseman.

“I like to look at it that way, but not in a cocky sense,” said Chavis regarding the idea of playing with Moncada in the big leagues. “Obviously, I have a long way to go. I just finished my season in the GCL. But it’s more of a goal to play with these guys. You see all the guys walking around, and it’s a goal to be with them some day in a big league clubhouse.”

Moncada aside, Chavis has already been through a whirlwind since arriving at JetBlue Park last week. “It’s just my third day, but a lot of has happened in three days,” he explained. “It’s been really exciting.”

Fortunately for the infielder, the confines aren’t unfamiliar considering he spent every summer for the past six years coming to play at Fenway South while participating for the East Cobb Astros.

And, as a bonus, because one of his teammates was former Red Sox outfielder Mike Cameron‘s son, Daz, Chavis even got to hit in the same batting cages he now finds himself sharing with the Red Sox big leaguers.

“I would be watching the GCL team taking BP and I was just thinking, “Wow, they must be really good,'” he said.

“It’s crazy. The first day I walked in Hanley [Ramirez] was sitting down talking to somebody. I was trying to not be too obvious about it but I kept watching what he was doing. I was just surprised at how big he was. It’s crazy to be near these guys and size up. I’m like, ‘OK, I have a ways to go.'”

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval brought a football into the clubhouse this afternoon and threw a strike to outfielder Quintin Berry . . . with his left hand. A minute later, he made another toss, again with perfect form, but this time righty.

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval brought a football into the clubhouse this afternoon and threw a strike to outfielder Quintin Berry . . . with his left hand. A minute later, he made another toss, again with perfect form, but this time righty.

It turns out that Sandoval, who throws a baseball right-handed, also has a pretty lively left arm.

“I was born lefty,” he explained. “I learned to throw right-handed when I was 9.”

And why would the native of Venezuela do that, when lefties are more prized?

“I wanted to play shortstop,” he said with a grin.

Sandoval said that he pitched with both hands — sometimes within the same game — as a child.

“It was a long time ago, but I did it a couple of times,” he said. “In between innings, I would switch gloves and throw with the other hand. I couldn’t do it in the same inning.”

Sandoval estimates he can throw 85-86 mph left-handed, and the above video from his days in San Francisco would seemingly support that point, with Sandoval exhibiting a natural motion and some zip on his warmup tosses.

So has he ever had a reason to throw a ball left-handed in a professional game?

“No,” he said with a laugh, “and I hope I never do.”

Blog Author: 
John Tomase

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Mookie Betts is finally starting to feel like an outfielder.

Mookie Betts

Mookie Betts

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Mookie Betts is finally starting to feel like an outfielder.

Lost in the good feelings of his debut last season was the fact that he posted excellent offensive numbers while learning a new position. A second baseman for virtually his entire pro career, Betts basically moved to the outfield in the big leagues and learned literally on the fly.

It was more of a challenge than the natural athlete expected.

“I didn’€™t know it was going to be as hard as it was,” he said. “I knew it would be a tough adjustment. Being at the big league level and everything, it gets kind of magnified. It was a bigger adjustment than I thought, but I feel like I’€™m taking strides.”

Until playing the outfield, Betts didn’t realize how tricky it was to read the ball off the bat, factor in the pitch type, and then put his head down and run to the spot while trusting he had taken the right route. If all went properly, he’d arrive in time to make a catch. If he didn’t the ball could be rolling around in the gap.

“I didn’€™t realize how hard it was to learn those routes as far as different hitters and what the pitcher is doing and all those things,” he said. “It’€™s a lot to take account for. It’€™s not just running and catching the ball.”

Betts has used BP to train himself to read the ball off the bat, but it’s only useful to a point. His real training will come in game action.

“(BP is) the best I can do,” he said. “Just try to run down everything I can. That’€™s been working for me pretty well.”

It helps to have such a strong support system. Veteran Shane Victorino gives him advice, and Betts has also been able to consult with former Red Sox greats like Jim Rice and Dwight Evans.

‘€œIt’€™s huge, having a relationship with those guys, because they’€™ve been around for so long and they know so much about the game and being friends with them and not saying, oh, it’€™s Big Papi, oh, it’€™s Jim Rice,” Betts said. “I think that’€™s huge, being able to talk to them, and they’€™re down to earth.”

Manager John Farrell saluted Betts’ inquisitiveness.

“The biggest thing that stands out is he feels comfortable in his own skin,” Farrell said. “So he’€™s not afraid to make a mistake, not afraid to ask a question that might expose him. He’€™s asking those questions to improve and hopefully shorten down that natural timeline to be an established major league player. You do that in combination with your abilities and wanting to find out. If a mistake is made, make it be your only time and adjust from there.”

Betts knows he’s in a battle for a spot on the team. He said his parents raised him not to be stressed, so whether heopens the season in the starting lineup, or on the bench, or in the minors, he’ll be fine.

“Just be myself,” he said. “I may not be a starter. Maybe I will. That’€™s whatever they want to do, and what’€™s best for the team. I know that I can’€™t try to be anybody else but me.”

Blog Author: 
John Tomase

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Allen Craig is very cautious when discussing what went wrong in 2014, and how it might go right in ’15. But he is offering hints that the form which allowed for a combined .863 OPS from 2011-13 is on the verge of returning.