Sure, David Ortiz will pimp a home run or two. As far as he’s concerned, he’s earned the right to do so.
Ortiz has been criticized in the past for admiring his homers a bit longer than most. The Boston Red Sox slugger doesn’t plan to change his ways, though. Showboating, for lack of a better term, simply is part of his game.
“The way that works, basically, is how much time you have at this level,” Ortiz recently told the Boston Herald’s Steve Buckley at spring training in Fort Myers. “If you’ve got two days in the big leagues, I don’t agree with you doing crazy stuff out there. But you have 19 years in the big leagues like I do, you can do whatever the hell you want — because you’ve earned that.”
David Price and Chris Archer might feel differently, as both pitchers previously made pointed comments about Ortiz’s propensity to hot dog dingers. But Ortiz’s teammates understand where he’s coming from. Big Papi has 466 home runs and counting, and he shows no signs of slowing down.
“He’s hit almost 500 of them,” first baseman Mike Napoli told Buckley. “He can do what he wants. But pitchers kind of do their thing too. They strike out a guy or get out of a situation, they’re fist-pumping and screaming and stuff. Same thing.”
“If you’ve earned the right to pimp a home run, you can pimp a home run,” pitcher Clay Buchholz added. “And David Ortiz has earned the right to pimp a home run if he wants to.”
So what does Ortiz think of any outside criticism? Well, he doesn’t sound too concerned. With offense down across Major League Baseball these days, home runs are something to cherish.
“The bottom line is, it’s not that bad,” Ortiz told Buckley. “It’s part of what people come and want to see. People want to come to the field, and the power hitters, they want to watch them hit homers.”
Thumbnail photo via Anthony Gruppuso/USA TODAY Sports Images