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Ben Cherington: Contract talks with David Ortiz will continue through season

01.10.14 at 9:42 am ET
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Appearing on The Hot Stove Show with Rob Bradford and Alex Speier Thursday night, Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington confirmed that the team has had contract talks with David Ortiz, and plan on continuing the conversation throughout the upcoming season.

“Probably so,” Cherington said when asked if talks with Ortiz and his agent, Fern Cuza, will be taking place in the coming months. “I can say that because I think there’€™s always dialogue with David and with Fern. That’€™s important to me. It’€™s important to ownership. It’€™s important to the organization to have open dialogue with our key players and David is certainly one of those. We’ve talked this winter.

“Look, David is a really important player on a number of levels. Obviously what he does on the field, what he means to the team, his place in the city, all of those things. He’€™s not just any baseball player. When someone like that expresses their strong interest in staying in the organization, I think we mostly take that as a good thing. It’€™s a heck of a lot better than the alternative. So we welcome that interest. So there will be dialogue and we’€™ll just have to see what that turns into. Our position hasn’t changed when it comes to David. It has been, for some time and I expect it will continue to be, we want him to finish his career with the Red Sox and we want him to do that in a way that’€™s right for him, that’€™s right for us, that fits his career and fits the type of player that he is, is graceful and all those things. Right now we’€™re counting on him being in the middle of our lineup for 2014 and we’€™re lucky to have him. Certainly the door will be open and there will be a chance to talk about it, whether it’€™s in spring training or into the season.”

Ortiz had told WEEI.com during his celebrity golf tournament in December that he wanted to get an extension done sooner rather than later.

The designated hitter is in the final year of his current deal, which will pay him $15 million.

For the complete audio, click here.

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