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Ortiz to get checked out Monday

06.05.09 at 6:11 pm ET
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David Ortiz has scheduled an eye exam for Monday to look into a problem he said he has had for “a few weeks now”. Ortiz said prior to Friday night’s game that his eyes have felt dried out on occasional at-bats which require him to focus on the pitcher for an extended period of time, forcing him to lose focus.

Ortiz said that he does not wear contact lenses and that the glasses he sometimes wears do not have a prescription.

Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein said that Ortiz tested well when the team conducted eye tests in Februrary.

The team has contracted Dr. David Kirschen and Dr. Daniel Laby to conduct extensive tests on the players’ vision in spring training ever since 2004. Included in the exam hand-eye coordination and depth-perception anlysis.

There is a precedent in regards to the doctors helping a player in mid-season. In ’04 Manny Ramirez came to Kirschen and Laby complaining that he was having a difficult time focusing on the baseball. After additional tests, the duo came up with an exercise Ramirez still uses in which he catches a hoop with balls attached, thrown at him from a close distance.

“It wasn’t as though his vision was bad, he was seeing the pitches like he always was,” explained Laby in an interview Friday afternoon. “But come June of ’04 he was not feeling like he was seeing and approaching the ball as well as he had been. That’s when we came up with the rings, and that worked for him.”

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