...not to mention Big Papi's t-shirt.
...still and always, Big Papi's smile.
...especially when he's hugging Pedro (HT to Jere).
...Jon Lester looking like a pillar of strength, playing long-toss under the Florida sun.
..Dustin Pedroia's diving intensity in the field picking up right where it left off.
...Jonathan Papelbon hunkered down during a grounder-fielding drill with a look of concentration on his face that might be more appropriate to someone on a bomb squad.
...Josh Beckett blurting out something in broken Spanish to a Japanese man. And that familiar rock and turn in the bullpen.
Spring Training is a very visual time for me. I find that's what gets me back into baseball every year--my first glimpse not just of a player's face, but the little quirks of body language you come to know so well in a game with 162 contests every year and no pads or facemasks.
The angle of Beckett's glove hand and the grim lipless line of his mouth as he delivers.
Young players going over and over their fundamentals like ballerinas at a barre, each movement precise and identical.
Tim Wakefield's intricate fingers on the ball.
The extra little oomph--a final, flourishing flick of the wrist--that Dustin Pedroia puts on the end of every throw (In the foreground of the linked video at around 00:10).
But the sight that did the most to transport me back into baseball mode this year was the one brought to me by an Over the Monster blog post of a Boston.com video--without dialogue, musical overlay or, it looked like, much editing--of Kevin Youkilis hitting in a batting cage.
Just watch it, unadulterated by decoration or drama. Youk's nervous, tiptoe stance. The light touch of his top hand, barely grasping the bat. The split-second drive through the zone. Just watch it, and smell the beer and the peanuts and the sunshine and the grass.