David Ortiz "lives in an emotional maelstrom"

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ESPN’s Howard Bryant has a fascinating feature today on the “emotional maelsrom” that has been David Oritz’s last couple of years with the Boston Red Sox.

There’s some arguably poor behavior on Ortiz’s part mentioned in there — he allegedly left the ballpark early back in April after being pinch hit for, he “raged” that the team-owned NESN ran a “who should be the DH” poll during a telecast earlier this month and he has seemingly forgotten just how loyal the team was to him back when the PED stuff came out last year — but overall, I think, it paints a pretty nuanced portrait of a guy who (a) is used to excelling; but (b) is clearly not anymore.

There’s this tendency to portray Ortiz as either a happy-go-lucky gentle giant or a slumping grouch.  The answer is that, like most of us, he can be both of those things.

Worth a read, that’s for sure.

Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto reportedly asks to be traded

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Craig Mish of MLB Network Radio is reporting that Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto has requested a trade out of Miami. Jon Heyman is characterizing it as Realmuto telling the team that he “wouldn’t mind” a trade.

Either way, Realmuto has no power to force a trade. This isn’t the NBA or something. Still, it’s evidence of just how dreary a prospect remaining in Miami is for Marlins veterans in the wake of trades that sent Giancarlo Stanton to New York, Marcell Ozuna to St. Louis.

Realmuto, who will turn 27 just before the 2018 season, hit .278/.332/.451 with 17 homers, 65 RBI, and eight steals over 141 games this past season. He only has three years of service time and is arbitration eligible for the first time this offseason. He made just $562K in the 2017 and will get a big raise this year, but he’s still going to be underpaid based on his production. If the Marlins wanted to trade him, they’d get a nice return. Why they would want to trade him, I have no idea.

Expect more of this sort of thing as the Marlins slash payroll and make it clear that their immediate priorities are more about saving money and less about winning baseball games. Which may or may not be a valid goal for the team’s new owners, but is certainly a letdown for baseball players and fans.