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Ortiz after HR: ‘You guys are going to see some results’

03.15.10 at 3:52 pm ET
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FORT MYERS, Fla. — David Ortiz meant it Saturday, and he reiterated it Monday.

“What I said the other day is totally true. This is my 14th spring training, and nobody talked to me about my numbers in spring training before,” Ortiz said after his Red Sox dropped an 8-4 decision to the Orioles at City of Palms Park, “so I can’t believe you guys are kind of getting encouraged into [doing] that.”

For Ortiz, Monday wasn’t a bad time to be checking the box score. After entering the game having gone 1-for-21 throughout spring training, the Sox DH went 2-for-2 with a two-run homer, single, and walk.

The home run came in the third inning off of Baltimore starter Brad Bergesen, who threw a 3-1 slider that Ortiz deposited into the right field seats. While the homer might have been somewhat wind-aided, the slugger’s ability to make the most of the circumstance left him with the kind of optimism that he has had a hard time finding throughout the Sox’ Grapefruit League schedule.

“That’s why you play in spring training, so I can figure things out,” he said. “That’s the way it’s supposed to be, right?”

After the game, Red Sox manager Terry Francona surmised that Ortiz’ best swing of the spring came in his third and final at-bat, when he rifled a Chris Tillman fastball into right field for his third hit of spring training. The slugger had a slightly different view.

“I think my good swing was hitting a slider on 3-1, a hitter’s count, out of the park,” Ortiz explained. “That’s not a pitch you’re expecting, so you have to put a good swing on it, otherwise you’re out. It was more compact, I guess, my base hit.” (When later asked what pitch he hit for a single, he responded, “A bullet. You’ve got your earplugs on, that’s why you didn’t notice?”)

Ortiz, who has been making slight adjustments to his swing from the outset of camp, felt like he wasn’t jumping at the ball as much as he has been of late, letting the ball come to him.

So, at the end of the day, was he happy to see results?

“Oh, you guys are going to see some results,” Ortiz insisted, “believe me.”

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