BOSTON (CBS) – For the second year in a row, Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez is helping kids go back to school with everything they need.

Along with his wife Betsy, Gonzalez and 220 Red Sox Scholars hit up the Target at the South Bay Shopping Mall in Dorchester for some back-to-school shopping, all on the Sox slugger.

Students ranging from seventh grade all the way up to high school juniors received $125 to get what they need to start the school year off right.

“Basically it’s just allowing the kids come and pick out school supplies,” said Gonzalez, who was inspired by a former teammate in San Diego. “Last year we did $100, but a lot of them ran into the $70 range and didn’t know what else to get. This year we changed it up a bit; it’s a $65 minimum in school supplies and $60 they can get in clothing — whatever they need for the upcoming year.”

Gonzalez On Back-To-School, State Of Sox:

“It’s awesome,” he said of the joy the families get from the event. “The kids the parents, a lot of them come up and say ‘we have 5 kids and this really helps.’ That’s what it’s all about, being able to help anybody and just seeing their smiles and seeing how excited they are to go back to school.”

“Hopefully this gets them excited to get to school and do really well right from the get-go,” said Gonzalez.

It also lets Gonzalez put behind all that is swirling around the Red Sox, at least for one day.

”Just seeing the smile from the kids, that’s all it’s about. For a moment we can put it all aside,” he said. “It’s been tough all season. We haven’t played good baseball so we have to keep playing and hopefully we get on a roll.”

In the latest edition of the Red Sox soap opera, a photo of snoozing manager Bobby Valentine was text to ownership from Gonzalez’ phone, reportedly from traded-catcher Kelly Shoppach. Shoppach has denied the claims, and Gonzalez is shrugging the story off.

“It’s one of those things you just move on. We’re here to play baseball and that’s all we focus on,” he said of the text story.

Is Gonzalez Now A Boston Sports Fan? 

That also goes for anything he reportedly has against Bobby Valentine.

“He’s been good. We’re all plugging along, all on the same page,” said Gonzalez. We’re in a good spot, everything is good we just haven’t been winning games and that’s all that matters.

“We have to come out and win tomorrow (against the Angels). It’s about the game at hand, not the next couple of games,” he said. “Hopefully we start winning a lot of games with that mentality.”


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