David Ortiz seems to be making the best of an unfamiliar situation.
Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell’s latest lineup tweak Tuesday featured Ortiz batting fifth — a spot the veteran designated hitter hadn’t occupied since May 6, 2012.
Ortiz typically hits out of the No. 3 hole, but his recent struggles at the plate (.207/.286/.329 slash line in May) prompted Farrell to do a bit of tinkering. Third baseman Pablo Sandoval shifted into the No. 3 spot for the Red Sox’s matchup with the Minnesota Twins.
Few players would choose to be bumped down in the batting order, but Ortiz — who admitted to reporters that he’s currently “swinging like (expletive)” — said he’s confident he’ll play his way back into his usual role.
“That’s how we are. We’re human beings,” the 39-year-old told reporters before Tuesday’s game, via the Boston Herald. “We have part of us that, you know, have got to go through this. For you guys who always ask me how much longer I can do it and I make it look easy, it ain’t that easy. Baseball players, we have to go through struggles to figure things out. Once again, it shows you guys that I’m not Superman. It’s part of the game, man. I keep on working. I’m going to keep on working as long as I play baseball, and I will find a way to get out of it once again.”
That response came as no surprise to the man who made the switch.
“There’s no lack of confidence in David,” Farrell told reporters, via the Herald. “Every good hitter, every hitter, is going to go through some stretches of time where maybe things aren’t clicking or they don’t get a lot of good fortune when they do square some balls up. You know, we’re going to rely on David, we’re going to build our lineup around him, certainly with him in it. This is just a temporary time right now.”
In the meantime, Ortiz joked he’ll be looking to 42-year-old New York Mets pitcher (and Internet sensation) Bartolo Colon for inspiration.
“If Bartolo Colon can get a hit, I probably can too,” he told reporters.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images
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