Craig Calcaterra

BOSTON, MA - JUNE 14:  David Price #24 of the Boston Red Sox reacts after the final out of the eighth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway Park on June 14, 2016 in Boston, Massachusetts.  Earlier in the inning, Price gave up a home run. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
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Red Sox fans need a bit more time

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David Price‘s first season in Boston had its ups and downs. He started slowly but then rebounded and looked much better in the second half. He led the league in innings and starts too, so even if he didn’t look like a Cy Young Award winner out there, he certainly put in the work.

The playoffs were a problem. He got one start against the Indians in the Division Series and, sadly for him and the Sox, he gave up five runs on six hits in three and a third innings. That certainly didn’t sit well with Sox fans, but hey, the playoffs are a crap shoot, everyone has a bad day and you gotta let that stuff go once the offseason hits, right?

Price certainly has. He’s even joking a bit at his own expense as he begins a vacation:

It’s good everyone can laugh about it now. Or at least almost everyone.

Wow. Tough room.

I’d suggest checking back in with them at New Year’s, David. Maybe they’ll be over it by then.

David Ortiz will be treated differently than other PED-associated Hall of Fame candidates

BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 1: David Ortiz #34 of the Boston Red Sox tips his helmet to the crowd as he exits the game after he singled during the fifth inning against the Toronto Blue Jays at Fenway Park on October 1, 2016 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Rich Gagnon/Getty Images)
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On the occasion of the Hall of Fame ballot being released yesterday, ESPN’s Buster Olney writes today that, when the time comes for David Ortiz to be considered in several years, the mindset of the voters with respect to players with PED-associations had best change. And that they had better consider Barry Bonds, Rogers Clemens and other PED-tainted candidates if they consider Ortiz for baseball’s highest honor:

So before the writers judge the candidacy of Bonds, Clemens, Manny Ramirez, and others on this year’s ballot, each needs to look into the future, to that day when Ortiz becomes eligible for election, and ask: What will I do with Big Papi?

Because if the majority of the writers apply the same standard to Ortiz that they have for Bonds, Clemens, McGwire and others — if they’re going to be fair and consistent about this — then they have to leave Ortiz off their ballots.

I take no issue with anything Olney says there. Beyond that quote he spits some righteous fire at the Hall of Fame electorate in general, telling them to get off their moral high horses and, perhaps, get out of the business of awards and Hall of Fame voting in general due to manifest conflicts of interest. It’s hard to disagree.

Yet, I think Olney’s words will fall on deaf ears. I believe that Oritz will get in on the first ballot — as he should — with nary a nod to his PED history. He’s well-liked. Voters won’t say that’s why they’re voting for him over the Bonds and Clemens of the world. They’ll say it’s because of the severity of the offense — the details of which they only know some of anyway — or they’ll make reference to lying or court cases or what not. Don’t believe it for a second. They’ll vote for Ortiz in numbers far greater than they’ll ever vote for Bonds or Clemens because those guys are considered jackasses and Ortiz’s overall story was a good one that leant itself to a lot of nice press.

Indeed, even if there is a hitch to Ortiz’s candidacy, PEDs will not be the primary basis. He, like Andy Pettitte and other well thought-of guys with PED associations, has never been considered a “cheater” by the anti-PED crew the way others with similar evidence against them have. For example, Sammy Sosa, who hit over 600 home runs and who, people’s speculation and some amount of reasonable conjecture notwithstanding, actually has no more hard PED evidence against him than Ortiz has. He’s not sniffing Cooperstown, ever, and he doesn’t even get the benefit of a baseball-based breakdown like Ortiz will get.

I actually think a lot more people will hold the fact that Ortiz was a DH against him than the PED stuff. Which shows you that, if Hall of Fame voters are irrational about one thing, they can be even more irrational about another, less reasonable thing if given the chance.

Matt Wieters cut his forearm in a “household accident”

Matt Wieters
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Dan Connolly reports that free agent catcher Matt Wieters cut his left (non-throwing) forearm, requiring stitches, in a “household accident” earlier this offseason. He has to wear a protective shield on it, Connolly says. He’s expected to be able to resume baseball activities in January, however, and it should not affect his readiness for spring training.

The vagueness of this injury is so frustrating. It could be anything! Did he nick himself with a chainsaw while cutting firewood? Did his kid trip him into a fish tank? However it happened, was it prefaced by “hold my beer . . . watch this!” So many questions.

Good to hear that he’s going to be fine for the season. Both for its own sake and for his free agency prospects. He is the best catcher on the market and is poised for a big payday. We’ve already had one free agent catcher suffer a serious and ill-timed injury in Wilson Ramos. Glad to hear there isn’t a second.