FORT MYERS, Fla. — When Pablo Sandoval is in a good mood, his energy can awaken even the sleepiest players and observers during an early morning workout almost two months before the season is to begin.

That was the case Thursday morning, as Sandoval arrived to JetBlue Park in good spirits and brought life to the field, laughing with teammates during a morning throwing session as he introduced himself to new faces down the right field line.

Sandoval then took swings from both sides of the cage during an informal batting practice session thrown by assistant hitting coach Victor Rodriguez.

He left shortly afterward and declined a chance to speak with a few reporters.

“I’ll talk to you guys next week,” he said. “I’m about to go to Miami.”

Jackie Bradley Jr., who hit in the same group with Sandoval on Thursday morning, shared his thoughts on the return of the Red Sox third baseman.

“He’s great,” Bradley said. “I mean, I’ve seen him before he was headed over to Miami and he looked great then when I was working out here. I’m glad to see his smile and his energy back. You can tell he has a chip on his shoulder. I love that.”

Sandoval missed nearly the entire 2016 season recovering from shoulder surgery. Getting healthy after surgery was more than just letting his shoulder recover.

The Red Sox had made it a priority to help him get in better shape. Sandoval moved to Fort Myers over the winter and, aside from a month-long trip to Europe, checked in with team employees at their training facility “basically every day,” president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski said earlier this offseason.

The Sox haven’t given any exact measurements but on Thursday Sandoval clearly looked more svelte, the word a hopeful Dombrowski had previously used to describe Sandoval at his best, and appears to have lost some, if not a substantial amount of weight.

“I’m not amazed just because I know how hard he worked,” Bradley said. “He’s really put in the work. He’s been very consistent with it. He’s been honest. What more can you ask from a guy that is coming here every day? He’s getting his routine done. And he’s getting it done at home too.”

The 30-year-old Sandoval is committed to becoming a switch-hitter again after giving up on the idea during his first season in Boston.

Even though he’s making $17 million this season, it’s an important camp for him. He hit just .245 with a .658 OPS in 2015 and lost his job to Travis Shaw last spring, when he was slower on defense than the Red Sox would’ve liked. He did not impress at the plate either, swinging too aggressively in the eyes of Manager John Farrell.

This time he may not have a pointed competitor coming for his job, since his competition comes from utility infielders Brock Holt, who is a shoo-in to make the roster regardless, Josh Rutledge and Marco Hernandez.

But Farrell warned last month that Sandoval would have to earn his playing time.

“It’s a huge motivator,” Bradley said. “There are going to be people doubting you. … You have to believe in yourself before the outside people can. You focus on that. Focus on getting better. Don’t let the outside distractions bother you. Just continue to work.”

The Red Sox will face the Washington Nationals in an exhibition game at the U.S. Naval Academy on April 1.

Free tickets will be given to students at the academy and members of the Navy. Tickets are not available to the public.

The game will be televised by ESPN.

Washington will host the Red Sox for another exhibition game on March 31 at Nationals Park.

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