|David Ortiz: ‘The scorekeepers here are always horrible’||06.18.14 at 5:59 pm ET|
In the latest show of disagreement with a scorekeeper (and there have been others), the designated hitter yelled up at the press box and gave a thumbs down in the direction of scorekeeper Bob Ellis after Ellis ruled a play on which Ortiz reached an error.
The play occurred in the bottom of the seventh, when Ortiz hit a ball toward first base that Joe Mauer was unable to handle. The play was followed up by a Mike Napoli inning-ending double play, but Ortiz was more upset with not being credited with the hit than the Sox failing to capitalize late in a scoreless game.
Even after tying the game with a solo shot in the 10th inning, Ortiz wasn’t done showing his frustration with not getting the hit.
“It’s always so hard here, man,” Ortiz said after he and Napoli hit back-to-back shots to win the game. “I thought they were supposed to have your back at home, and it never happens. It’s always like that. I’ve been here for more than a decade and the scorekeepers here are always horrible. This is home, man.
“What do you want Mauer to do? He dove for the ball and knocked it down. I always look like I am the bad guy, but they always end up changing it. Don’t be just checking on Papi, check on the scorekeeper. See what he’s doing wrong. It’s something that’s getting out of control.”
When asked what he was yelling to the scorekeeper, Ortiz responded, “What is he watching? He’s not watching the same ball game that everybody’s watching, I guess.”
The bigger issue there, of course, was that he showed his disagreement when he did and the way he did. Still, Ortiz said it was necessary to voice his opinion right then and there.
“I’ve got to make it clear,” Ortiz said. “It’s not my first rodeo, man.”
|Red Sox-Twins series preview||06.16.14 at 3:49 pm ET|
Boston is coming off of a four-game series against the Indians that featured its fair share of highs and lows. The Red Sox won the first two games of the series with a combined offensive output of 15 runs over the two contests. Friday’s game was particularly impressive, as the Red Sox scored 10 runs — marking the first time all season that the team scored in double figures.
However, Boston dropped the final two games of the series mostly due to a lack of clutch hitting. Red Sox hitters were 1-for-15 with runners in scoring position during both games, leaving 15 men on base.
“We’re getting guys on, but we’re not getting them in,” said Red Sox third baseman Brock Holt after the game. “We’ll get there eventually. Someone’s going to come up and we’re going to get big hit after big hit.”
The Twins are coming off of a series loss against the AL Central-leading Tigers, dropping the final game in crushing fashion. With the game tied 3-3 in the ninth inning and Detroit’s Torii Hunter on first base, Victor Martinez lofted a fly ball to Twins right fielder Oswaldo Arcia, who dropped the ball, allowing Hunter to advance to third. J.D. Martinez followed with a sacrifice fly, scoring Hunter and giving Detroit the win.
“Arcia didn’t see the ball,” said Twins manager Ron Gardenhire after the game. “That was obvious. He had no clue where the ball went. It was obviously a tough sun field out there, bright. If you can’t see the ball, you can’t see the ball.”
|David Ortiz on The Bradfo Show: ‘I only think about the Hall of Fame when you guys talk to me about it’||06.12.14 at 1:26 pm ET|
Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz joined Rob Bradford on The Bradfo Show podcast to discuss his future candidacy for the Hall of Fame. To listen to the interview, go to The Bradfo Show audio on demand page.
Ortiz has compiled an impressive track record during his 17-year career, with three World Series titles, a World Series MVP award, nine All-Star nods and 445 home runs to his name. While Ortiz has heard Hall of Fame talk from the media for years, his teammates called him “Cooperstown” during the 2013 World Series, when Ortiz posted an otherworldly line of .688/.760/1.188 in six games en route to the team’s eighth championship.
While the debate over whether Ortiz will one day have his name enshrined in Cooperstown continues, Ortiz stated that he tends to not think about it.
“I’m going to be honest with you, it’s literally nothing. Like, I don’t think about it. I haven’t sat down and acknowledged my numbers to go to the Hall of Fame or anything like that,” Ortiz said. “I just keep on trying to have fun and try to keep on winning. I know this career is not forever, but I’m just trying to keep on having fun and keep people smiling and try to put on a good show, because at the end of the day, the time to worry about the Hall of Fame, it’s going to come.
“I’m going to have plenty of time to think about it and say whatever I want to say or think whatever I want to think about it, but to be honest with you, I only think about the Hall of Fame when you guys talk to me about it.”
The Hall of Fame has been historically been rough on designated hitters, as All-Star sluggers such as Edgar Martinez and Harold Baines have been consistently snubbed year after year. The Hall finally welcomed its first DH this year, as Frank Thomas — who spent 58 percent of his career games at designated hitter — was elected on Jan. 8 with 83.7 percent of the vote.
|John Farrell’s pregame team meeting receives rave reviews from Red Sox||06.09.14 at 4:20 am ET|
DETROIT — They don’t happen very often, so when they do come around the participants usually take notice.
Prior to the Red Sox‘ series finale against the Tigers at Comerica Park Sunday night, manager John Farrell called a team meeting. With the Sox entering the night riding a five-game losing streak, while sitting at seven games under .500 (27-34), Farrell wanted to make sure his players weren’t getting too down on themselves.
“Sure, it was well-timed. But it wasn’t like there was any panic or any scolding,” said outfielder Jonny Gomes. “It was just kind of to get us back on track.
“I think the vibe he was trying to get across that he appreciated how we were going about our business. We lost 10 in a row and we went through this stretch and no one has been benched for not hustling, not one has gotten benched for mental errors and nobody has been late to the field. It was just to acknowledge that we should keep playing the game right and keep grinding.”
While nobody was suggesting the meeting supplied the impetus for the Red Sox‘ 5-3 win over the Tigers, there did appear to be a sense of heightened focus in some areas. One example was the Sox’ ability to drive up the pitch count on Detroit starter Anibal Sanchez, the kind of plate discipline that had come and gone during the club’s recent skid.
The only other known team meeting this season came April 25 in Toronto, a day after the Red Sox had turned in one of their worst performances in a loss to the Yankees at Fenway Park. That get-together, however, was conducted within the routine of preparing for the three-game series against the Blue Jays.
It is believed the Red Sox didn’t hold a single team meeting throughout 2013.
“We had a little meeting with our manager and he made a clear point,” said Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz, whose three-run homer proved the game’s decisive blow. “We’ve been struggling trying to win ball games, but everybody is giving a good effort and everybody is busting their tails. Things aren’t going our way, but we still have four months of the season and things will change. We have a lot of good swings tonight, they were just right at people.
“John, he doesn’t do that many meetings, but when he has one with us it’s just to make sure we’re not struggling mentally just because we’re not seeing the results.”
|Kevin Millar on MFB: MLB ‘dropped the ball in the situation with David Price’||06.06.14 at 1:20 pm ET|
Since Millar last called into the show, the big story surrounding the Red Sox has been the situation between David Ortiz and David Price in last Friday’s Red Sox-Rays game. Millar said he was surprised the situation erupted the way it did, especially given the both teams’ recent struggles entering the game, but he said he can understand the situation from both sides.
“I will say this, as much as I love Papi, and you know that I’m a Red Sox groupie, the moral of the story is Price said some interesting things and I think he said something that stood out,” Millar said. “Guys like Miguel Cabrera, tremendous human beings. David Ortiz, tremendous human being. At the end of the day, you are a pitcher and you have a family to feed also. So if you have a ball go inside — and this isn’t so much about David Ortiz, either … you have to back these guys off the plate at some point because they’re trying to get you out also.
“That pitch was on purpose, we know that. But in the big picture, to pound these guys inside, there’s going to be balls that get away. When Price said, ‘Nobody’s bigger than the game,’ on the other side of the dugout and you’re not David Ortiz’s teammate, I can see where guys get rubbed the wrong way.”
Both benches were given warnings after Price hit Ortiz, but Price wasn’t tossed after hitting Mike Carp later on because it was ruled unintentional. Sox pitcher Brandon Workman, however, was ejected in the sixth after throwing behind Evan Longoria, and later suspended six games. Price, on the other hand, only received a fine.
Millar took issue with Major League Baseball‘s ruling.
“I think something should’ve been done league-wise,” he said. “When you suspend Workman, you have to suspend David Price. The only thing at the end of the day is you’re asking it to be fair. Major League Baseball, you have to be fair. I know there’s a fine in it, an undisclosed amount. David Price got fined, but we know the intent was to hit David Ortiz with that pitch, and once the league looks at it, he’s got to go for six games also. Not just Workman.
“[MLB] dropped the ball in the situation with David Price. … It’s a unique situation. Rarely do we see two stars going at it like they have and this is a great rivalry. It’s turned into one of the great rivalries in baseball.”
|David Ortiz on ‘bigger than the game’ comments: ‘Who’s David Price?’||06.04.14 at 8:31 pm ET|
Following the incident in which Price hit Ortiz with a first-inning fastball, the Tampa Bay ace went on the Fox television broadcast and said, “Nobody is bigger than the game of baseball, and sometimes the way he acts out there, he kind of looks like he’s bigger than the game of baseball. That’s not the way it is, that’s not the way it goes.”
It was a claim Ortiz continues to take particular issue with. (To listen to the audio, click here.)
“That ain’t me. I never overlook the game, you know? There’s never going to be a player bigger than the game,” the DH told WEEI.com prior to the Red Sox‘ series finale against the Indians. “It doesn’t matter if you act like it, if you think you are or if people think that you are. It’s not true. Bigger than the game, nobody’s ever going to be. Know why? Because you come in, you play, you leave and the game continues.
“The one thing I can tell you about when he says that is he’s just trying to look for an excuse to get out of it. That’s a dumb-ass excuse, because whoever knows me knows I never act like I’m bigger than the game ever. He just doesn’t understand that he’s not going to win all the time. He’s carried that since last year when we whupped his ass. … It’s too bad that MLB sees the way he talked the day that he hit me and the way that he talked the next day and they still haven’t followed up with the rules. He basically said that he hit me on purpose, but I’m over that. I don’t really care about what he said. Who gives a [expletive]? Who is David Price? I don’t really care. I’m going to continue with what I do. Like it or not, it is what it is.
“I respect the game. I don’t think there’s a player in the game that can ever be bigger than the game. We’ve got guys that have done a lot of good things for the game, have put up crazy numbers, but we don’t give life to the game; the game gives us life. That’s why you’re never going to be bigger than the game.”
|David Ortiz on David Price: ‘I guess the rules are not for everyone’||06.03.14 at 4:47 pm ET|
Predictably, David Ortiz was not happy to learn that Brandon Workman was suspended for throwing at Evan Longoria while David Price skated after starting last Friday’s fracas with what the Boston designated hitter called “some punk-ass [expletive].”
After Price, who has a history with Ortiz dating back to last season’s ALDS, plunked Ortiz in the first inning and hit Mike Carp in the fourth, warnings were issued to both teams. Workman missed behind the head of Longoria in the sixth inning, resulting in his ejection.
Speaking to reporters Tuesday, Ortiz was heated at the lack of discipline for Price.
“I don’t even know what to say, you know? I mean, he started everything up and we’ve got to pay for it, basically,” Ortiz said. “That’s the message that I’m getting, right? I don’t have any answer about that, but it’s like I say, way too much evidence now that he hit me on purpose, and the funny thing is that we are the ones that are getting fines, suspensions, all kind of stuff. I guess the rules are not for everyone.”
Price said prior to Saturday’s game that Ortiz acts like he’s “bigger than the game of baseball.” Ortiz disagreed with that, and he also was irritated that Price still harbored animosity toward him over Game 2 of the ALDS, in which Price felt Ortiz looked at one of his home runs a little too long.
“He says I think I’m bigger than the game? Who around the league can say that about myself? It’s basically what happens every time the pitcher screws up,” Ortiz said. ‘They’re always looking for excuses. You’re never going to see a pitcher coming out and saying, ‘Yeah, I hit him on purpose.’ ‘Oh, I was trying to establish my fastball in.’ Bro, you’ve given eight walks in 80 innings. You know what you’re doing out there.
“In my case, when he hit me I was a little confused because everything, the way it went down the year before and stuff. Basically, first inning, but as the game goes by I start thinking about things and seeing things different, and that’s why I was so angry after the game. … I don’t think what they’re doing is fair. I think the rules should be for everybody.”
While the fact that the benches cleared between the two teams twice in less than a week would suggest things could remain heated between the two clubs going forward, Ortiz said Price will not hit him again.
“In my case, I made my point clear. I’m not going to get hit again, not by him. I’m not going to get hit again my him,” Ortiz said. ‘He did it on purpose, he punked me and that’s very disrespectful. I’m a grown-ass man, I’ve been around the league for a long time and I know how to take care of business on my own.”
|Tom Verducci on D&C: ‘David Price brought his personal grudge to that game’ Friday||06.02.14 at 11:39 am ET|
Emotions once again reached a fever pitch last Friday between the Red Sox and Rays, as Price hit both Ortiz and Mike Carp, which resulted in the benches clearing in the fourth inning. Then Sox starter Brandon Workman was ejected in the sixth inning for throwing behind Evan Longoria.
After the game, Ortiz blasted Price, stating that the Tampa lefty “better bring the gloves” if he hits him again.
“I understand what Price was doing there,” Verducci said. “In my mind, he was definitely throwing it at David Ortiz. I did not think he deserved to be thrown out of the game, so I think the Red Sox were wrong about that, but David Price brought his personal grudge to that game and he actually put Evan Longoria in a terrible position, because he knew at the time that they were going to go after Longoria in retribution.
“If Longoria gets hit by a pitch and breaks his wrist, that’s the end of Tampa Bay season if it hasn’t ended already. It’s a dumb thing to do to try to settle a personal grudge that was four or five months old.”
While Drew is scheduled to join the team on Monday, some have raised the point that the Sox may not need him after all, as Brock Holt and Xander Bogaerts are hitting .375 and .367, respectively, over the last seven games.
Regardless, Verducci believes that Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington would still sign Drew if given another opportunity.
“I think he still does [feel that way],” Verducci said. “They’re adding a very good player that has to make the team better. … I never have an issue with adding more talent, and that’s what they did. … In the long run, in four months, if I’m in the Red Sox, I’d rather have Drew than not have him.”
|Rays pitcher David Price on David Ortiz: ‘We don’t have anything to talk about’||05.31.14 at 8:13 pm ET|
David Ortiz never charged Rays left-hander David Price after the Tampa Bay ace drilled him on Friday night, but the Red Sox slugger pulled no punches in ripping Price and saying he’d lost all respect for him for the pitcher drummed him in the back in his first at-bat of Friday’s game. When asked about the remarks by reporters prior to Saturday’s game, Price suggested that he wasn’t wounded by them.
“For as many people as I quote unquote lost respect for, I gained respect from a lot more people,” Price told reporters. “And I know that’s a fact.”
Price did, however, take issue with Ortiz suggesting that getting hit with a pitch represented an act of “war.”
“He was mad, I get it,” Price told reporters. “You say stupid stuff when you’re mad. Been there. I’m sure he probably wishes he didn’t say some of the things he said. You can’t relate the game we play to a war. Kellen Winslow got a lot of crap for saying he was a soldier. No, you’re not a soldier. This is not war. We have troops fighting for us that are in a war. It’s not a good comparison.”
Price shrugged off the possibility of having an air-clearing summit with Ortiz.
“We don’t have anything to talk about,” he told reporters.
Red Sox skipper John Farrell might have thought home plate umpire Dan Bellino and crew chief Jeff Kellogg let Friday night’s game get out of control. Naturally, his counterpart in the Tampa Bay dugout saw things much differently.
“That was obvious that you’re not trying to hit Carp right there,” Maddon said of Price drilling the Red Sox first baseman in the fourth inning. “I thought the umpires utilized really good baseball judgment regarding how they handled it after Ortiz, they handled the rest of that really well. Of course, the ball at somebody’s head is no fun to see that happened. Again, you have to get their side of the whole thing. I’m just saying from our side of things, it was not precipitated by what happened last week.
“You know what? You let the players play. I’m a big believer in the players do a great job of policing one another. I try not to interfere with that kind of stuff. We’ll see how it plays out [Saturday]. There’s going to be no animosity from us to their side. Beginning of the game, we’ll just see how it plays. Again, the umpires did a great job tonight.”
Maddon and Farrell were not warned formally before the game, to the surprise of some, including Price. But once the game start, Maddon had no issue with Price clearly hitting Ortiz in the middle of the back as retribution for Ortiz slow trot around the bases on two home runs off Price in last fall’s ALDS Game 2.
“For me, you let the players play, and you really try to not get involved in that, whether it’s me as the manager or the umpires, let the players play,” Maddon said. “I’m a big believer in the players’ ability to police the game on their own. I really am. I thought the players did well tonight. I thought the umpires did well tonight. I thought it went well and I thought everything was handled properly.”
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