FORT MYERS, Fla. -- In a bizarre interview Sunday morning upon arriving at the Fenway South complex, Boston Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval said no one from the team ever asked him to lose weight in the offseason, that he hasn't weighed himself since October, and that he has something to prove but isn't affected by his disastrous 2015 season.
Other than that, it was a quiet morning in the clubhouse.
Although manager John Farrell said in January that Sandoval was "roughly 20 pounds lighter than the last game he played for us in 2015," Sandoval didn't appear that much lighter Sunday.
"I don't weigh. I don't weigh in at all," Sandoval said after being asked how much weight he had lost. "I just do my work, try to do everything I can out there. I don't weigh at all in the whole offseason. I just try to get better, be in a better position and, like I say, be an athlete."
His contention that no one from the team asked him to lose weight was curious, given that Farrell, coach Torey Lovullo and president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski all have said that the team mandated he lose weight. Lovullo, who was the interim manager to finish last season, said on the final day in Cleveland that the team had talked to Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez and asked them to lose weight. For Ramirez, it was 15 to 20 pounds, and Lovullo wasn't sure the exact amount for Sandoval.
Sandoval experienced a noticeable weight gain last season, and his performance cratered. In his worst season in the big leagues, he had a .245/.292/.366 slash line and was the lowest-ranked defensive third baseman in the majors among qualifiers.
"I don't got nothing to prove [in 2016]," Sandoval said. "I just prepare myself to perform well, to support my teammates to play well, to try to get to the final, to the World Series. So that's what I'm doing. I have personal goals this year I've got in my mind. Keep working hard and do things out there on the field."
He said his offseason regimen consisted of focusing on being healthy, lifting weights and track and field.
"I don't weigh. I don't weigh in at all. I just do my work, try to do everything I can out there. I don't weigh at all in the whole offseason. I just try to get better, be in a better position and, like I say, be an athlete."Pablo Sandoval
Sandoval said that after he recovered from a bout with pneumonia to end the season, he was cleared to start working out in November.
"I started working out to prepare myself to be an athlete in the field," he said. "So that's what I do. I don't try to lose weight. I don't try to do nothing. I just try to put in my work, feel better, the things that I can do in the field to be better are better, so that's what I do."
Sandoval also said he is returning to switch-hitting this year. He stopped switch-hitting early last season after going 2-for-41 as a righty. Batting as a lefty against lefties, he hit .255 (27-for-106).
"I lost my confidence," he said. "If you don't have that, don't feel confident at home plate [on] that right side, you're not going to trust in your swing. You're gonna put a lot of pressure on you, so that's what I do."
Sandoval, who signed a five-year, $95 million deal last year, said he will look to rebound in 2016 and prove he is worth that contract.
"I'm going to prove to the fans, going to prove to my teammates, that I can be a better defensive player, offensive player, to win games," he said. "That's what I do. I have to prove, have to work hard to get to that moment."