Red Sox

‘It doesn’t get better than this’: Marcelo Mayer cherishes visit to Fenway Park

Mayer took batting and fielding practice and chatted with Alex Cora and Red Sox players before they faced the Yankees.

Marcelo Mayer takes groundballs with Xander Bogaerts. John Tlumacki/Globe Staff

Marcelo Mayer’s first slice of life in Boston came days before he stepped onto the field at Fenway Park.

Mayer, the No. 4 overall pick in the 2021 Major League Baseball Draft, said fans approached him and asked for his autograph last Friday as he left the airport. When he got his COVID test, a few more swarmed him and said hello. He wasn’t wearing Red Sox gear, but the fact that they recognized him right away told him all he needed to know.

“It’s insane,” the 18-year-old phenom said Thursday. “It just shows how dedicated and loyal this fan base is.”

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The 6-foot-3 shortstop signed with the Red Sox earlier in the day, reportedly for $6,644,000. The Red Sox honored him on the jumbotron, then he spoke with manager Alex Cora, showed off his fluidity in the field and smooth lefty swing at the plate, and interacted with various players.

Later on, Mayer spoke to a sizable crowd in the dugout and made it clear he was thrilled to finally arrive and soak in a Red Sox-Yankees game. He didn’t directly specify whether he would be rooting for his childhood-favorite Yankees or his new organization, but the implication was that his allegiance had changed.

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“I’m so excited right now,” Mayer said with a grin. “It doesn’t get better than this.”

The Chula Vista, California, native hit .392 with 14 home runs and 45 RBIs in 34 games during his senior year at Eastlake High. Mayer is already regarded by many as one of the elite prospects in the Red Sox farm system and is believed to have tremendous potential.

That potential was on display Thursday, albeit in a small sample size. Mayer said his first thought when entering was the history of Fenway and of all the legends who have played at the ballpark over the years. Red Sox fans got a glimpse of their possible shortstop of the future, and he got a chance to hit in a Major League park.

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“It was sick,” Mayer said of the batter’s box. “It was way different than high school.”

He called starting shortstop Xander Bogaerts “down to earth” and said he enjoyed chatting with him again after they previously met at the All-Star Game. Mayer said the main advice Red Sox players have given him is to take care of his body and work hard.

Mayer, who came to Boston with his family, said he’s heading to Fort Myers, Florida, on Friday and is hoping to play there soon. He said his new life seems more real now that he’s a member of the organization and has spent some time at Fenway.

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“It’s been amazing,” Mayer said. “It’s been everything I could ask for.”

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