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David Ortiz on Red Sox perceived issues: ‘I run this f***ing clubhouse right here’

It’s happening again. As we near the halfway point in the 2012 season, the Red Sox have picked up right where they left off last September. Injuries have certainly played a part, but at the moment Boston is a mediocre team at best as it hovers around a .500 record. In addition to a poor performance on the field, Buster Olney described the Red Sox clubhouse as a “toxic” environment over the weekend. Where have we heard that before? To David Ortiz, it’s all too familiar and he’s not going to stand for it this time around.

“First of all, this is the Red Sox right here,” Ortiz said according to ESPNBoston.com. “This ain’t no (expletive) organization that players just walk in for the first day and start doing whatever the (expletive) they want,” he said. “Players, when they walk into this clubhouse, they look around and they want to adjust themselves to what is going on here, and that’s how things are in this clubhouse.

“If (Olney) wants to make a comment like that, why don’t you ask me a question first. I run this (expletive) clubhouse right here. This clubhouse has no problem. The last problem this clubhouse had was last year when everything came down to what it was in (September), but since then everybody’s cool and everybody’s trying their best to win games.”

People love to criticize Bobby Valentine, and at times it’s deserved. But he wasn’t exactly dealt the best hand in the world. Valentine was expected to come in and put an immediate stop to the beer-drinking, fried-chicken-eating culture that plagued Boston last year. Not to mention, no one could have anticipated he would be without Carl Crawford and Jacoby Ellsbury and dealing with a banged up Kevin Youkilis and Dustin Pedroia. Under the horrendous circumstances, Valentine has hardly been Boston’s problem.

As far as the clubhouse being “toxic” is concerned, the media wants it to be that way. Whether the Red Sox have clubhouse issues or not, losing is going to create them in the eyes of writers, reporters and fans. The only way to stop it is to win some games.

Photo credit: Bob DeChiara-US PRESSWIRE

David Ortiz reportedly called team meeting to defend Bobby Valentine

It could be a complete coincidence, but the Red Sox have played particularly well since David Ortiz called a players-only meeting for the team back on May 11. Since that day, Boston has gone 12-5 — their best stretch of baseball this season. The most obvious reason for Ortiz’s meeting was that his team was well under .500 and playing horribly. As we recently found out, another reason may have been that he was tired of the way his teammates were treating their new manager.

“I was feeling really bad about Bobby the way things were going and it was because I can see the frustration on his face,” Ortiz said according to ESPNBoston.com. “His hands were tied because he was trying to do things to help us out and it wasn’t working, but it wasn’t his fault. We weren’t executing, so at the end of the day the manager gets blamed, but it’s not his fault. He might make a move, but we need to execute.

“I saw his frustrations and I felt like s***. Part of the reason why is we need to get together and talk about things and chat about things as players, because players make great managers but you need to play well for that to happen.”

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David Ortiz on slumping Albert Pujols: He’s a bad motherf***er

Albert Pujols has managed to end his home run drought in Los Angeles, but the numbers are still far from cutting it. A quarter of the way through the season, the $240 million man is still hitting .214 with an on-base percentage of only .248. He has driven in only 18 runs and has three homers, but Pujols is finally showing signs of life at the plate. As someone who knows plenty about starting the year off in a horrible slump, David Ortiz says he is not worried about Albert turning it around — and we shouldn’t be either.

“Albert Pujols? Let me tell you something about Albert Pujols,” Ortiz said according to ESPNBoston.com. “Albert Pujols is a bad mother f—er. The baseball world needs Albert Pujols.

“I spent two months with one home run, and I got exhausted mentally and physically. But it was more mental because it was too much of me trying different things and trying to figure out why I wasn’t hitting homers.”

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David Ortiz against new MLB playoff rules, doesn’t want to pack his stuff for one game

On Friday, Major League Baseball announced that it was expanding its playoff system to include an extra wild card team. The change was made mainly to improve the regular season and keep an extra team in contention. At the end of the season, the two wild card winners will face each other in a one-game playoff to determine who moves on to the divisional round.

Reactions to the expansion have been mixed thus far, but Red Sox slugger David Ortiz may have taken the cake on Thursday when asked for his thoughts. His issue? Having to pack up your stuff and travel just for a one-game playoff.

“One game? That’s kind of crazy,” designated hitter David Ortiz said according to ESPN.com. “You know how many things we’ve got to move around and pack for one game? It’d make more sense for two wild cards to play at least a two-out-of-three series while the other teams take a break for three days because they won their divisions.”

Take the sentence about having to move around and pack out, and Ortiz may have a point. It’s tough to determine anything that follows a 162-game season with just one game. But Ortiz’s argument about having to pack all your stuff up to play just one game makes him sound like your stereotypical spoiled pro athlete. Not to mention, the Red Sox would have been the beneficiary of the expanded playoffs last year, as they finished fifth in the A.L. and would have had a chance at the one-game playoff even after their epic meltdown. Maybe Big Papi should stick to flipping out over his personal stat issues.

David Ortiz approves of Bobby Valentine’s Red Sox alcohol ban ‘This ain’t no bar’

The frat house that allegedly was the Boston Red Sox clubhouse last season will be no more.

Bobby Valentine is putting his foot down in his first year as Sox manager, telling players during a Saturday meeting that there will be no boozing in the clubhouse or on return flights this season.

Valentine insists prohibiting alcohol is something he’s done as manager in the past and not only in response to the team’s notorious beer-and-chicken-guzzling affair that emerged after Boston’s remarkable September collapse last year.

David Ortiz agrees with his new skipper’s decision.

“We’re not here to drink,” Ortiz said. “We’re here to play baseball. You know what I’m saying? This ain’t no bar. This is an organization, a place that needs a lot of athleticism. Alcohol has nothing to do with that. People have alcohol in their houses. If you want to drink it, drink at home.”

And by that we hope Ortiz doesn’t mean, “If playing with a mean buzz is your thing, please take care of it before you come to the ballpark.” That would be irresponsible.

David Ortiz Says He Might Ditch Red Sox ‘Drama’ to Play for Yankees

Over the past couple of season, Big Papi has developed quite the big ego.  It seems as though the way the media treated Davd Ortiz after his slow start in 2010 has really taken a toll on the Red Sox slugger.  Since that epic slump, he has been particularly short with reporters and less concerned with his public image.  This season, Papi voiced his opinion on the way the Yankees handled one of their veterans and had no problem admitting that some of his teammates didn’t care about losing.

Now, Ortiz has set his sights on marketing himself.  What better way to play hard ball as a Red Sox free agent then to praise the Yankees and dog on life in Boston?

“There’s too much drama, man,” Ortiz told ESPN’s Colleen Dominguez when asked if he plans on returning to the Red Sox. “There’s too much drama. I have been thinking about a lot of things. I don’t know if I want to be part of this drama for next year.”

Dominguez then asked Big Papi if he would consider joining Boston’s most hated rival.

“That’s something I gotta think about,” he said. “I’ve been here on the Red Sox a long time, and I’ve seen how everything goes down between these two ballclubs. It’s great from what I hear. It’s a good situation to be involved in. Who doesn’t want to be involved in a great situation where everything goes the right way?”

No, you did not miss anything.  The free agent period has yet to open in baseball.  Despite the way Ortiz wants to make it sound, he doesn’t have offers from both the Red Sox and Yankees that he has to mull over.  With the way Papi mashed the ball this season, both teams could probably use him.  That being said, the Yankees have their DH situation pretty well set and may need it vacant with the way some of their players (see Rodriguez, Alex) are aging. Ortiz is trying to scare the Sox into thinking he would gladly play for the Yankees, but in reality Papi staying in Boston probably makes the most sense for he and the team.

David Ortiz Says Some Red Sox Players Probably Didn’t Care

With the greatest collapse in franchise history comes plenty of speculation about what went wrong. After the Red Sox lost a nine-game Wild Card lead in less than a month, people wanted answers. A team can’t just implode without providing a few reason as to what caused it — especially a team in Boston.

Over the weekend, David Ortiz provided some insight into what went wrong in the Red Sox clubhouse during the final month of the season.  While it should not come as a shock to anyone considering what players were doing during games, Big Papi admitted during his interview with WEEI that some of the players on the team probably didn’t care.

“Probably, yeah,” Ortiz said when asked about guys not caring about winning and losing. “It probably happened, but seeing [that] … as an owner and manager of the team, you keep that in mind for yourself. … You guys know the guys who care. That’s the thing. People know. What bothers me the most is whenever makes it want to sound like nobody cares. There’s a lot of guys that care.

“I care about winning games, I care about doing well, I care about doing the right thing to win games. … A lot of people, for example, people want to make a big deal about me complaining about me not getting an RBI. That’s my job. If I don’t get RBIs, I won’t be here. I was complaining about something that I earned and the scorekeeper doesn’t want to make it happen … that’s what I’ve got to complain about.”

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