Mags confident about Papi

Slowly but surely, David Ortiz seems to be getting out of his crisis point. Since the calendar flipped from April to May, it has been a different Papi. The lefty slugger is hitting .310 with three homers and seven RBIs in May. He is feeling confident and looking it. One sign of that was how well Ortiz worked himself into that 3-2 count in the ninth yesterday with the game on the line. It should have been a walk, but we all know what happened on the call. Another good sign is that he was the only Boston player to have a hit against Blue Jays righty Shaun Marcum in Wednesday’s game, belting a pair of line singles.

At any rate, hitting coach Dave Magadan is seeing signs every day of a rejuvenated Ortiz.

“He’s done a lot of work, like he always does,” Magadan said. “He’s taken a lot of extra batting practice. What he’s working on is showing up in games. He’s not afraid to get here early and do the things he needs to do to get back on track. He’s showing signs of it. He’s showing a little more consistency. He put a couple good swings on balls today. With his continued hard work, I see him turning the corner, continuing to take good swings, being a little more consistent putting the ball in play hard. When he does that, he’s going to get hits.”

Of late, Ortiz has been spraying the ball to all fields.

“He just needs to hit the ball where it’s pitched. I was saying earlier, when he’s struggling, he’s fouling a lot of pitches off. He’s missing the pitch.  When he’s going good, he’s putting good swings on the ball and hitting them hard,” Magadan said. “It doesn’t matter whether it’s up the middle, to right field, off the Monster. As long as he’s hitting the ball where it’s pitched and driving it, he’s on his way.”

Finally, it seems Ortiz is stockpiling consecutive quality at-bats.

“He’s putting consistently good swings on balls,” Magadan said. “He’s putting himself in a good position to put a good swing on the ball. He’s ready on time. He’s a little more direct to the ball. The guys that are throwing 93, 94, 95, he’s getting to those pitches. He’s seeing the off-speed better. When you don’t have to start earlier or cheat to get to the hard stuff, you tend to take the nasty breaking balls. He’s done a better job of that. He’s just put a lot of hard work in, and you’re starting to see the results of that now.”

Ortiz’s frustration is starting to turn into determination.

“He’s always been confident,” Magadan said. “He’s always had the attitude that it’s just a matter of time before he breaks out of it. We all have confidence that it’s going to happen. He looks too good in his pre-game work, in his prep before the game and his routine, it looks too good for it not to eventually show up in the game. He’s starting to show signs of it now.”

Ortiz expressed his own optimism about the way things are headed in his most recent MLBlog.

18 Comments

Regarding the umpiring (or lack there of) in this series: They were asked to be consistent, and that they were….
CONSISTENTLY BAD.

I’m not sure if umps have gotten worse, or technology has gotten to the point where we can now see their mistakes. All I know is it’s been ridiculous the past couple of years. I know the old joke about umps being blind, but I’m starting to wonder if MLB should offer its umpires Lasix free of charge.

Do you still see Ortiz hitting .260 with 30 HR & 100 RBIs for the year?

Verlander shuts down the Yanks this afternoon so the Sox won’t face him in the series. But the offense has to show up nonetheless. Go Red Sox!

Dr. Browne. Thanks for the insights about Papi. That was a great at bat in the 9th, showing his strengths and patience. We need him. Go Sox!
http://thomasox.mlblogs.com/

Here’s hoping for a good road trip!

Hey all — can’t seem to get in to Cover-It-Live anymore? my initial posts are not getting noticed or coming in?

hey alll

Hey all Red Sox People. We are not that far back and we look like there is some life there! Is there anybody on this blog that can give me Greg!s e-mail or his new blog. Thanks. Paul

r

dgneubert@yahoo.com
okintheok@shaw.ca

I will forward your posts on to Greg.

Thanks Bob! Got em!
Paul, please let me know if you got the e-mail I have sent you. DGN, I hope I answered your questions on the blog during the game!
GO SOX!

I have good feeling about the Red Sox. It seems when the Sox lost, the hated Yankees lost as well so the Sox wouldn’t be pulled farther back.
Bard threw 9 pitches in the 7th to bail out Buchholz. I don’t see why Bard had to pitch in the 8th. With 5 run lead, I would use DC, Ramon, or Oki to finish the game. I am not sure if Bard is available tonight if in a close game. This is not a criticism just my own observation.
Let’s go derail the D Train tonight. Go Sox. Go Twins, Go Mariners.

man v-mart is spendin cash like pacman jones in a strip club. wow. apparently he is unfamiliar with the term
“contract year”.

A good team should never blow a 6-1 lead. The script for last night’s game was Bard in the 8th and Pap closed out the game. Bard was nowhere to be found because Bard was unnecessarily used for 1.2 innings the night before with a huge lead. Bard is available this afternoon but Pap?
V-Mart was the least or lesser problem last night as his teammate pcked him up.

007…

I agree a good team should never blow a 6-1 lead but the Red Sox are not a good team. Boston has been hovering under .500 for most of the season. 188 million dollars doesn’t go that far anymore. lol.

Road series in N.Y. and T.B. await ( a brief 2 game series in N.Y. ) We’ll see where the Red Sox stand after leaving St. Pete. My confidence in this team is around zero, so far nothing has changed my mind. I wonder how much of a toll losing these close games will take on this team. Will Boston be sellers or buyers come late July???? Hmmmmmm.

bosox. i think it’s pretty apparent where they will be when leave st. pete. if they don’t start pitching better i’m not sure they can even beat out toronto for 3rd place in the east. just keep findin new and creative ways to lose. getting shut down by a guy who was in AAA 30 minutes before the game is a good one. i said when they did it the lackey deal was a mistake but at least we’ve only got 4 3/4 more years to watch this. i don’t think they can buy enough to fix this mess and i don’t think they have anything worth selling.

The heartbreaking loss last night was the direct result of the mismanagement of the bullpen the night before. The Sox are not a good team and are managed by a manager who sometimes I think manages a ball game on whim rather than on baseball logic.
I can relate at least 4 games so far that the losses were directly attributtable to the action or inaction on the manager.
The Sox should have won the Det series 2-1. Unless there is a dramatic comeback, the Sox are to lose another series. Sigh…..

It’s a given that some years the Sox will be great and other years not so great. But Brian makes a very good point when he laments the fact that 180 million dollars can’t get you 25 above average employees these days.

Don’t worry, the Sox will beat up the Yankees, you bet!

007 — I couldn’t agree more, but my analysis with Tito’s perplexing moves and non-moves is different.

My hunch is that he and Farrell plan things out well in advance. From post game interviews it is plain that they decide what games and then for each game, what scenarios they want to use what pitchers, and in particular, which opposition players than want each pitcher to face.

Then the trouble is, Tito never waivers from his script. He doesn’t seem to notice or heed the nuisances or events of the game, and thus his lack of tactical adaption drives me crazy. This, I suspect is why he makes so many two out substitutions (which almost always back-fire on him, at least this year so far), and also why I believe he played Bard last night, even though they had a 5 run lead at the time. He had already decided on his bullpen rotation, and he wasn’t going to change that.

Of course, we can never know from our vantage point, but Tito’s explanation — after games — is always along the lines of, “we already decided we wanted “X-pitcher” to face “y-player” and then he does it, even if the current pitcher has gotten two outs and seems to be on a roll.

Its always a tough call, because the pitcher (current or new) can you make you look good or bad, depending upon what happens, but it does seem Tito’s tactical management of games seems almost non-existent to me, and I think it because he plans all scenarios out ahead of time (he has said so) — and then he sticks to his pre-game decisions, when those scenarios arise, which could be a good help if balanced, but he never seems to factor in the moment enough — and in the end sticks to his script, when most of us can see a mile away when it is probably not a good idea.

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