Home opener for the Boston Red Sox Spring Training

Reporter: Zach Oliveri Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:
JetBlue Park at Fenway South. Credit: WINK News.

It was a day of firsts at JetBlue Park in Fort Myers on Sunday afternoon.

It was the first home game for the Boston Red Sox, the first normal Spring Training season in years without COVID-19 restrictions, but also the first visit to JetBlue Park for Paul Gonsalves and his family.

“I’ve been a lifelong fan. We’ve never been to Spring Training. We always see it on TV. And this was a now or never moment. So we said scratch that off my bucket list,” Gonsalves said.

They made the trip down from Rhode Island to see their favorite team play in more favorable weather this time of year and get Bryalen Gonsalves ready for his turn in the batter’s box.

“He has tryouts for little league on the weekend so try to get his mind in a baseball mood,” Braylen said.

The fans were definitely in a baseball mood on Sunday as the Tampa Bay Rays faced the Boston Red Sox. Excited to see familiar faces like the Red Sox’s star third baseman, Rafael Devers, and other up-and-coming prospects.

“Going to finish first and maybe get to the World Series hopefully. And win the World Series. Gotta think positive,” Red Sox fan, Vic Stolarcyk said.

Before the game started the team honored first responders and those who helped the Southwest Florida community after Hurricane Ian, by letting them throw out the first pitch.

“We were really worried about you know the park survived and what had happened. We came down last November and saw all the devastation. It seems much better now,” Red Sox fan Linda Graham, said.

It’s worth noting that former Estero High star, Josh Winckowski was the starting pitcher for the Boston Red Sox on Sunday, helping to deliver a seven-to-six win over the Rays.

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