BOSTON –– The arbitration hearing between David Ortiz and the Red Sox is rapidly approaching.
But if both sides fail to settle on the designated hitter’s salary before Monday’s court date, Red Sox team president Larry Lucchino said he doesn’t expect any contentious backlash between the two parties.
“This is just a business disagreement,” said Lucchino, who also confirmed that the hearing is Monday. “David is worthy of a whole lot of money and we’re happy to recognize that fact. He’s essentially a signed player, it’s just a question of what number [salary].
“I don’t think anyone is going to question his quality of performance and the importance of him to the Red Sox. From our point of view, it’s certainly not going to be contentious and on David’s side, I don’t think it’ll be acrimonious, either.”
According to the salary submissions to the arbitration panel, both sides are roughly $4 million apart in negotiations. Ortiz has also stated he would prefer a multiyear deal and would like to avoid a hearing.
Making an appearance alongside Lucchino at a JetBlue function on Friday, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine didn’t appear concerned by the impact of Ortiz’s situation.
“[Ortiz] is a mature adult and we’re a mature organization, so I don’t think it’s going to be any mud-slinging,” Valentine said. “Just going to find out what the contract is.”