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David Ortiz makes his case for contract extension: ‘I think I’m going to be OK’

02.19.14 at 1:04 pm ET
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FORT MYERS, Fla. — David Ortiz made his public case Wednesday for a one-year extension to a two-year, $30 million deal that expires at the end of this season.

“I’m a little afraid to talk about my contract,” Ortiz began. “People have been killing me when I get that question asked and I give an answer. I think I’m going to be fine. That’s all I have to say right now about contract thing. A lot of people are tired about me talking about contract. But it ain’t me. You guys bring the question, I have an answer. We will find out later on what’s going to happen with that.”

Will he get an extension?

“I think I’m going to be OK,” he answered. “I think I’m going to be OK.”

Ortiz was sensitive to the constant talk about whether he should get an extension before the season begins.

“What am I supposed to do? I know a lot of you guys that come here and get to see what we do every day here, some of you appreciate what we do here, some of you don’t, which is pretty much fair because nobody has to agree with what we do. I don’t really care,” Ortiz insisted. “But at the end of the day, we get prepared, we work to get things done. I’m one of those guys who gets prepared to win games, win championships and that’s all that matters to me. But there’s something after that. It’s what motivates you to do that. It’s hard for some people to understand that. But what can I say? Nobody has any idea of how I get things done and how I have to put myself together to get it done and put up a show. It is what it is, basically.”

Ortiz was asked if it’s tough to hear from critics after delivering an MVP performance in the 2013 World Series and Boston’s third World Series in eight seasons.

“It’s a little crazy,” he said. “It’s not tough but it’s a little crazy, it’s a little out of hand. People sometimes want to make a big deal about that, like me asking for another year extension when some of us are asking for 10-year extensions. But like I say, you’re not going to make everyone happy. Some people are going to like, some people don’t. That’s the war in today’s day, that’s the war.

“I’m having fun and things are going well and when things start going well, it’s a time for you to agree on things and ask for whatever you want. My problems ain’t the Red Sox, my problems ain’t the fans. I’m super happy to be here. I’m glad to wear this uniform. The fans know that I’m more than proud of performing in front of them. I try my best every time I go out there. It’s just a couple of haters out there flipping things around. I can’t control that. If you guys ask me a question, I’m more than nice to give you guys an answer. It’s not like every time I bump into you guys I talk about contract. But you guys come to me with a question, what do you want me to do? [Answer] ‘next.’ You guys want to hear an answer, right? That’s what I do.”

In the end, Ortiz is optimistic that a deal will indeed get done.

“I don’t know but conversations are good and my bosses are more than happy to talk about what we’re talking about,” he said. “They’re trying to get this out of the way so it doesn’t turn into a distraction. My goal now is trying to win another championship. That’s all that matters to me right now. The contract situation thing is going to be taken care of at some point. When? I don’t really know. Hopefully, pretty soon but like I always tell you guys, I’m the kind of guy, once I know I’m in, I’m in. People always want to make you look bad when it comes down to contract situation. I haven’t met the first player that played without a contract. You know what I’m saying? What else can I tell you? It is what it is.”

But whether it gets done before the season starts might be another matter.

“It’s a 50-50 situation right now,” Ortiz said. “Would it be any different if I come in and do what I normally do? Then we’ll be talking about a real contract afterwards. I think that it’s more than a contract and the things that people are tired of hearing. It’s more of respect. Who am I? Just another player. Probably not but as a player we always have challenges that we need to accomplish during the season and I’m up to that. Every year is a challenge to me because everybody always expects me to come in and put up numbers, which I’ve been doing since I got here. I’m tired of myself talking contract, to be honest with you.”

Read More: 2014 spring training, Boston Red Sox, David Ortiz, MLB
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