NEW YORK — The Red Sox looked and sounded deflated following Friday’s 6-0 loss to the Yankees. No one epitomized Boston’s frustration more than David Ortiz.
Ortiz, sitting at his locker with his back turned to reporters in the visitors’ clubhouse at Yankee Stadium, expressed dissatisfaction with another lackluster offensive effort in which the Red Sox produced just three hits. The nine-time All-Star also took exception to Boston’s lack of energy and the club’s schedule.
“The schedule we have is just unbelievable. It’s pretty bad, man. It’s pretty bad,” Ortiz said. “I’m not using that as an excuse, but we’re human and we go everywhere to play, right? In my 18-year career, I’ve never seen that. The schedule is we had to play the last game on the West Coast in a night game and then have to travel. It’s pretty bad. You have to do something about that at some point. It doesn’t help.”
The Red Sox played on 20 consecutive days before Thursday’s day off. The stretch included stops in Detroit and Baltimore before a seven-game homestand, though it clearly was the recent West Coast swing that had Ortiz hot under the collar.
The Red Sox, who played four games in Oakland and three in Seattle, finished up their series against the Mariners on Wednesday night. The Sox then traveled across country, arriving in New York on Thursday morning for a three-game series against the Yankees that kicked off Friday night.
The schedule certainly represents a grind for the Red Sox, who are in the midst of a stretch in which they play 26 games over 28 days, but it’s reasonable to think Ortiz’s frustration is compounded by Boston’s struggles. The Red Sox’s offense hasn’t been able to get anything going for much of the season, and it’s looking more and more like the club needs to make some changes if it intends to compete, though Ortiz wasn’t ready to make such a declaration following another discouraging defeat.
“I don’t know, man. Our GM (Ben Cherington) is somewhere right here,” Ortiz said looking around the clubhouse and into the corridor. “Ask that question to him. I’m just a player.”
Clearly, these are not good times for the defending World Series champions.