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With trade deadline looming, David Ortiz talks 10-5 rights

07.12.12 at 2:01 am ET
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David Ortiz isn't likely to be traded from the Red Sox. (AP)

The notion of blowing up the Red Sox roster has been surfacing here and there in recent weeks. They stand at 43-43, just 2½ games out of a wild card spot, but 9½ games behind the Yankees for first place in the American League East.

And while there have been different definitions of turning the roster inside-out, the consensus is that the far end of the spectrum when it comes to truly blowing things up involves actually trading David Ortiz.

It isn’t going to happen.

The first dynamic that comes to mind when exploring the possibility of Ortiz entering into trade discussions is the designated hitter’s 10-5 rights (10 years in the major leagues, and five continuous seasons with the same team), allowing the player the right to refuse any trade. For the first time, Ortiz discussed (and even thought about) the topic.

“I’ve never thought about it,” he said. “My name has never been mentioned in a trade, so why should I think about it? If I have to, I have to.”

So, what would be Ortiz’ inclination regarding the clause?

“It all depends,” he said. “Let’s say [Kevin Youkilis'] situation, where it wasn’t going to fix itself. … But I look at it this way: Whoever knocks on my door is going to need me. But, to be honest with you, this is the first time I’ve ever even thought about.”

The reality is, however, such a decision won’t have to be made.

Ortiz’s value is worth much more to the Red Sox than any other team considering the new rules. Unlike in years past, teams are only allowed to receive draft picks for free agents signing elsewhere if the qualifying player has spent the entirety of the season with one organization. In other words, the Sox would have to receive the value of not only the slugger in return, but also two top draft picks. It’s a package that would seem difficult to extract from a team which might be getting just two months of service — no matter how impressive the offensive output — given that the acquiring team wouldn’t be able to get any picks for Ortiz.

Moreover, the Red Sox have also said that they hope to keep Ortiz in a Red Sox uniform until the day that he retires, a point recently reiterated by Red Sox CEO Larry Lucchino to WEEI.com.

“We love and respect David Ortiz. He is part of the heart and soul of this team and this franchise, and we want him to play his entire remaining career with the Boston Red Sox. He has carried this 2012 team with his performance and leadership,” said CEO/president Larry Lucchino. “His latest 4th of July accomplishment of 400 home runs is but another reminder of his greatness and Hall of Fame worthiness.”

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