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.”