Little drama to be found in the Red Sox big switcheroo
|06.30.11 at 1:01 am ET|
PHILADELPHIA — Prior to the Red Sox’ 2-1 loss to the Phillies Wednesday night, Adrian Gonzalez reiterated (numerous times) that the media was making way too much of the switch that put David Ortiz at first base, and the Sox’ everyday first baseman in right field.
“I’m playing right field,” Gonzalez said. “What do you want me to say?”
After manning the position for the first time since winter ball in 2005, there was even less to add.
Gonzalez wasn’t forced to track down any balls in right field (only being forced to jump for a Chase Utley fly ball in the eighth inning that was just out of reach), and Ortiz came across just one chance at first base — a slow roller in the fourth inning off the bat of Dominic Brown.
Offensively, the move didn’t translate into any sort of drama, either. Gonzalez had one of the Red Sox five hits, while Ortiz went 0-for-4. While Gonzalez had little to say about the new venture — which, according to Ortiz, won’t be making a repeat performance Thursday — the DH-turned-first baseman offered his thoughts on the challenges.
“To be honest with you I was thinking about defending myself out there,” Ortiz quipped. “You’ve got tons of lefties coming to hit so you don’t want to get caught with a rocket hit right at you when you’re thinking about hitting … Yeah, I came out of it alive. That’s a good thing.”
Before the game, Ortiz even made a plea to a fellow first baseman, Philadelphia’s Ryan Howard.
“I had a little chat with him before the game,” he said. “I told him I have a family waiting for me at home. He said, ‘Alright Papi, we’ll try and stay way from there.”
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