Papi at crossroads

The David Ortiz saga remains a hot topic, even after a 5-1 win over the Angels. Ortiz’s slump  extended with an 0-for-4 on Tuesday night that included two strikeouts and two double plays, the latter of which came with the bases loaded and nobody out in a tie game.

It is a tough situation for manager Terry Francona, particularly with Mike Lowell seemingly spraying line drives in every at-bat. Francona really would like Ortiz to get hot, but there’s a fine line with how long he can wait. The Red Sox, to a man, hope that Big Papi snaps out of it.

In the meantime, Jeremy Hermida stepped into the hero’s role tonight after Ortiz’s DP.

“It’s 25 guys, man. We met the other day,” Dustin Pedroia said. “We need everybody to win. This isn’t two or three guys that’s going to carry a team. We need everybody to help us win games. We have each other’s back, and we’re ready for the long haul. We started out [poorly], but we’re going to come out of it. We believe that.”

Pedroia — in his typically animated way — also expressed confidence that Ortiz will snap out of it.

“David’s fine. He’s one of our teammates,” Pedroia said. “It could have been me that hit into a double play. It happens to everybody, man. He’s had 60 at-bats. A couple of years ago, I had 60 at-bats I was hitting .170 and everybody was ready to kill me too. And what happened? Laser show.”

“I’m tired of looking at the NESN poll –  Why is David struggling? David’s fine. He’s one of our teammates. We believe in him. He came out of it last year, he’s going to come out of it this year. I’m going to go online and vote. NESN.com. Papi’s fine. Thanks for playing.”

22 Comments

Good win last night. Great to see John L back in the win coloumn. Looks like big Papi is the only hole in the lineup.
Tito should play Mikey more often

I know Papi would gidp with bases loaded and no out and I prayed please at least let the run score. Papi couldn’t even do that. It’s time to be patient or not. I am not the manager.
Great win, the win should go to Lester, Pedey, and Hermida.

last nite was probably the best/most complete game they’ve played to this point. great effort from lester. shut down inning from pap. couple of timely hits. that’s what this team is supposed to look like. as for ortiz. i was all for giving him thru april to show some signs. but this ain’t last year. they are playing catch up big time. as long as lowell is hot i don’t see how you don’t DH him every day.

Well said, WSSoxFan–I couldn’t say it any better. Mike Lowell needs to play every day at DH. We can’t afford to have our hot hitter sitting on the bench, and Papi continuing to put up zeros. We are already playing catch-up. We gave Papi April–it is time for him to shut it down, and for Mike to be the DH.

well greg. shows what we know. just saw on espn papi is in the lineup tonite. don’t know if lowell is or not. oh well i hope he proves us all wrong and has a huge nite.

Lowell is not in the lineup. McDonald out and Hall is in. I have a suggestion for uncle Tito. Can Papi imitate Zazu by taking 3 strikes instead of didp and killing the rally? If Papi hits a game winning HR tonight, how stupid we fans are and how brilliant uncle Tito is.

I hope Tito turns out to be Mr. Genius tonight with Papi, Andy, esp. if he hits a game-winning ANYTHING! GO SOX!

Well today is another day. David Ortiz may be done but its positive to see a lot of good things in the lineup. Drew is hitting again. Pedroia is playing well and Beltre is not making his daily error. V-Mart is also being a catcher as well.
Sox have a long way to go but at least they are not playing like the baltimore Orioles anymore.

i don’t really like the decision to DH papi ahead of lowell rite now but i do at least understand the rationale. can somebody give me a logical reason hall is playin ahead of hermieda against a RH?

I like tito but i never thought he was a great player,on papi sure last year he led the league in home runs and rbis,but he never was the dramatic player he was when manny was here.I lost alot of respect for him over his constant whinning when manny left,thats suspisious to me.But i really think that things aren’t the same in the club house,i hope i’m wrong.On tito i meant manager and papi i meant the second half of last season.

k. i was wrong about the hall hermieda situation but i swear i saw hall and mcd listed in L and C somewhere earlier. good for papi. no one would be happier for him if he can get it going. they are definitely a MUCH better team if he’s hitting well.

IF they lose this game it’s one of the 6-10 francona costs them evrery year. not bunting with 1st and 2nd and nobody after the 7th was stupid. taking lackey out with barely 100 pitches as good as he was pitching is even more stupid.

Very well pitched game. Lackey had so many ground outs. Can’t complain (there were some) on the win. The team will even be better when Ells and Cameron return. It ain’t over yet.

We have had some great pitching the last few games and some timely hitting – all be it too long into the game. But maybe that was to keep us on edge. Tomorrow is another important game- not only to sweep the A’s and hopefully for DiceK to continue the Sox pitching momentum but, more importantly, to get the team up for the next three games with the Evil Empire. We have to show them that we can indeed beat them. I’d like to see the streak continue throughout the weekend. GO SOX!!!

Ian I love your writing, but to say that “Papi’s at a Crossroads” is ridiculous.

You only have to look back all the way to last year to see that a slow start in the first half of the season didn’t keep Ortizzle from compiling offensive stats that the vast majority of MLB players would love to have on their resume.

Where is this crossroads? Who, besides the most backward, know-nothing Red Sox bandwagoneers are calling for Papi to be benched at this point in the season? Or traded?

Last year, I stated that unless Ortiz got his numbers up significantly the Red Sox needed to trade him. I was wrong. His post-All-Star-Game numbers were very impressive.

So, what does this “Crossroads” consist of? Who, besides the fickle-hearted Fenway Unfaithful, are calling for Big Papi to be given his walking papers?

One way to disabuse yourself of the idea of throwing Big Papi on the garbage heap is to ask yourself this question: “If the Red Sox were to offer David Ortiz for trade bait, how long would he be on the market? And what teams would jump at the chance to obtain this Yankee-killing machine? Would this trade help or hurt the Red Sox in the short and/or long term?”

To even talk about this is absurd. The idea that Ortiz is “at a crossroads” on May 5th is, frankly, laughable.

Houndcat

Tonight’s game is important in that we want to sweep the Halos and keep the streak going and see if the Sox can break the super 500 barrier and Dice-K don’t have to face the Yankees.
The game was won on pitching, defense (Beltre & Pedey), and timely hits (Beltre & Papi). Is this the turning point for Papi, his opposite field HR? I’d like Papi to prove me wrong about him.
Before the season started, I said that Cameron and Beltre would be fine. Beltre has snapped out of the defensive woes and is starting to pay dividends at third base. I like Lackey pickup albeit the cost is high. It’s not my $$$. Go Red Sox! Go Dice-K!

I have been among those that have called for Papi to take a seat and for Mike Lowell to be inserted into the lineup every day. But then I read Dustin Pedroia’s comments and he definitely has a point. Had Tito not stuck with him a few years ago when he was struggling, would he have become an MVP and Gold Glove winner? I’m thinking probably not. I do think this is a little different in that Papi has repeatedly shown he cannot keep up with a good fastball. He consistently missed “fat” pitches he would have killed a couple of years ago. It’s a tough call for Tito, and not clear cut. What I do think is that Ortiz needs to adapt to the fact he can’t catch up with a good fastball, and think about going to the left side of the field more often. He is still plenty strong enough to reach fences to the opposite field in any park, but especially Fenway.

glad it all worked out but i still think, unless he said he was done, he pulled lackey too soon. oh well once again that’s the way this team was built. the vast majority of their wins will likely be like last nite. good to see them play to their strength. be nice to get above .500 tonite and at least have some mo going into this series against NY. it sounds kinda greedy but IMO they really need to sweep NY. 2 out of 3 is an absolute must.

007. personally i’m pleasantly surprised at beltre’s offense thus far. defense, meh he’ll come around i guess. cameron on the other hand i don’t think think this team misses him at all. i think hermieda is better offensively and plenty adequate defensively. i will never understand the cameron signing. of all theo’s free agency gems that’s probably the biggest puzzler.

Garry: How are you? How?s your back? Pedey is a young budding star but Ortiz is in his twilight of his career. We don?t know when Papi will be contributing between those didps. It?s certainty that we will see Papi as a DH against a starting RHP.
wssoxfan:. Cameron will be fine. The Yankees were at one time interested in Cameron. Until Cameron and Ells return, I?d like to see Hermida, McDonald, Van Every play everyday insert Bill Hall as a pinch runner in late innings. I was surprised that Tito didn?t pinch ran for Ortiz after he drew a walk in late inning. But it worked out fine.

007. cameron is what he is. he’s gonna hit about .240-.245. 20 hr’s and 70-75 rbi’s. he’s also gonna strike out 150+ times which equals a lot of guys LOB when you combine it with a low BA. that’s all well and good if you have tex., a-rod, and cano hitting in the middle of your lineup. with the sox not so much. it is what it is he’s there. maybe he’ll surprise like beltre has.

Statitically you are right about Cameron. But Cameron can do no worse than Hermida, McDonald, Van Every and or Hall. Theo dumped JBay for a reason and acquired Cameron for defense. I am not saying Cameron = JBay, far from it hitting wise. Let?s see how a healthy Cameron can do. We may be pleasantly surprised by Cameron.

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