Dustin Pedroia told WEEI's Rob Bradford that the Red Sox should give David Ortiz "whatever he wants" to keep the All-Star DH in Boston.
Ortiz' contract situation is becoming a recurring topic of conversation in Boston. Amusingly enough, this comes despite the team's willingness to give him a two-year deal in November 2012. Ortiz has always wanted to avoid the uncomfortable situation of playing any given season without his next year guaranteed, however, so the year of slack is gone, and he's angling for another.
Seeing Pedroia speaking out in Ortiz' favor is...predictable. As much as the second baseman is Boston's golden boy, that doesn't necessarily buy his support in business issues. For better or worse, Pedroia isn't one to tow a company line, and as one of Boston's longest tenured players after Ortiz (and one who by his own admission "hates" the business aspect of the game) it's no surprise he'd have Papi's back.
And, honestly, it's hard to disagree with Pedroia. Maybe it doesn't make sense to go chasing after a 38-year-old DH to sign an extension--even of just one year--when the market for 38-year-old DH types isn't that competitive and there are so many reasons for Ortiz to want to stay. But this is Big Papi we're talking about, and that makes all the difference. Baseball is a business, but even sentimentality can be expressed in terms of dollars and cents. It's hard to imagine any algorithm which suggests letting David Ortiz go over one extra year is worth the uproar it would cause, particularly when he's still producing as well as he is at the plate.
David Ortiz has to retire as a member of the Red Sox. It would be nice if he weren't so outspoken about his contract situation and his willingness to leave if the Sox fight this one out, but even holding that against him it's inconceivable that the Sox could let him leave. As Pedroia says, give the man what he wants*.
Read more Red Sox:
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- Expectations are key to appreciating Jackie Bradley
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*Ok, so maybe draw the line somewhere before 6/$120.