David Ortiz

UPDATE: David Ortiz to accept arbitration, stay with Red Sox

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7:00 p.m. EST update: ESPN Deportes’ Enrique Rojas reports that Ortiz is planning to accept Boston’s offer of arbitration, something that should guarantee him at least a modest raise from the $12.5 million he made last season. The Red Sox still might be able to change his mind by offering him an improved two-year contract. Ortiz has made it clear in the past they he prefers being on a multiyear deal.

6:50 p.m. EST update: WEEI’s Alex Speier is confirming the McDonald report of a two-year, $18 million offer and says that Ortiz is looking for $25 million. Ortiz’s agent and the Red Sox are due to meet again tonight.

4:35 p.m. EST update: ESPN Boston’s Joe McDonald reports that the Red Sox have offered Ortiz a two-year, $18 million deal. Considering that Ortiz has the arbitration leverage, that’s not going to get a deal done. Ortiz made $12.5 million last season and has a great case for a raise in arbitration based on his production. $25 million for two years seems like a much more suitable meeting place.

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The Boston Globe’s Peter Abraham reports that there “does not seem to be a team legitimately interested in David Ortiz beyond the Red Sox,” and ESPNBoston.com states that “one way or another” Ortiz will remain with Boston.

The one way or another comes down to the Red Sox’s arbitration offer. Ortiz could accept that and potentially make $14 million-$15 million next year. Alternatively, he could re-up for two years at something like $25 million total.

Ortiz has until midnight Wednesday to accept the arbitration offer.

The 36-year-old Ortiz is coming off his best season since 2007, having hit .309/.398/.554 with 29 homers and 96 RBI in 525 at-bats. However, there are several other DH options available, all of whom would come much cheaper. Add in the fact that Ortiz would cost his signing team a draft pick and it’s easy to see why there isn’t much demand for his services.

“La Vida Baseball,” celebrating Latino baseball, launches

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A new website has launched. It’s called “La Vida Baseball,” and it’s all about celebrating the past, present and future of Latino baseball from a Latino perspective.

The site, produced in partnership with the Hall of Fame, has four general areas of focus:

  • Who’s Now: Focusing on current Latino players;
  • Who’s Next: Focusing on top prospects here, in the Caribbean and in Central and South America;
  • Our Life: Off-the-Field stuff, including player’s lives, lifestyles and hobbies; and
  • Our Legends: Focusing on Latino baseball history, Hall of Famers and overlooked players.

As the site has just launched there aren’t yet a ton of stories up there, but there is one about Roberto Clemente, another about Felix Hernandez and some other stuff.

The site is much-needed. Baseball reporters for American outlets are overwhelmingly white, non-Spanish speakers. Reporters, who, generally, gravitate to the players who are the most like they are. Which is understandable on some level. When you’re writing stories about people you need to be able to communicate with them and relate to them on more than a mere perfunctory level. As such, no matter how good the intentions of baseball media, we tend to see the clubhouse and the culture of baseball from a distinctly American perspective. And we tend to paint Latino players with a broad, broad brush.

La Vida Baseball will, hopefully, remedy all of that and will, hopefully, give us a fresh and insightful depiction Latino players and their culture.

 

David Ross to compete on “Dancing with the Stars”

David Ross
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Do you miss David Ross? I miss David Ross. The season hasn’t even started yet and I miss David Ross. There’s something comforting about having a likable graybeard catcher in the game with bonus points for being bald. His loss will be felt.

But while we won’t have David Ross in baseball all this year — at least on the field; he’s a special assistant with the Cubs — we’ll still have David Ross someplace:

Johnny Damon did “Celebrity Apprentice” — Trump fired him, sadly — but we’ve never had a ballplayer on “Dancing With The Stars.” There have been several football players and some Olympians, but no baseball guys. Which makes some amount of sense as, outside of the middle infielders and first basemen, footwork isn’t necessarily the most important tool.

Catchers are particularly plodding for athletes, so good luck, David. Unless you have some moves you haven’t flashed in the past, you’ll probably need it.