Sox players, including Jason Varitek (left) ran through some drills. (Globe Staff Photo / Jim Davis)

Forget what the calendar says about spring starting on March 20th, spring is here. It may be 25° with a windchill of 14° outside right now as I write this but it’s still spring to me. Why’s that? Because spring training has started for the Boston Red Sox.

Yesterday marked the day where the Red Sox pitchers and catchers took their physicals and then all participated in some conditioning drills. All of the members of the Red Sox particpiated with the exception of Tim Wakefield whose right butt cheek was hurting.

[flv width=”400″ height=”300″][/flv]video courtesy of NECN

Today will mark the first workout for the pitchers and catchers and in just 2 whole days, the rest of the team is expected to report to camp. And it’s just 11 days until the Sox play their first exhibition games of the season.

Today also marks the first day that newly re-signed catcher Jason Varitek will address the assembled media. It should be interesting to hear what he has to say about the whole free agent process but with Scott Boras being his agent, I’m sure he’ll say all the right things.

Don’t forget NESN will be broadcasting live at 10 AM this morning from Ft. Myers.

John Smoltz held a picnic court yesterday on the picnic benches and talk about a variety of subjects including his departure from the Atlanta Braves.

Smoltz: ‘Wearing a new uniform, for me, is not a problem’ [Full Count]

Francona is having the time of his life [Boston Globe]

Mike Lowell looks back on a challenging winter [WEEI]

Learning curve for the youngsters [Boston Globe]

Manny Delcarmen wants to setup Papelbon [Full Count]

Pedroia: ‘I’m shredded and jacked’ [Providence Journal]

Takashi Saito, Junichi Tazawa reflect on a pioneer (Hideo Nomo) [Full Count]

Jon Lester attains veteran status [Boston Herald]

Jacoby Ellsbury is set to make an impression when arrives today [ProJo Sox Blog]

Red Sox hope young pitchers listen when Smoltz speaks [Providence Journal]

Four Red Sox minor leaguers are on the Baseball Prospectus Top 100 list [Baseball Prospectus]

The Salem Red Sox are bringing in the green thanks to ticket sales [WDBJ7]