No surprise: David Ortiz wants a multi-year deal from Boston

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David Ortiz is poised to hit free agency. And, no surprise, he wants a multi-year deal. He said this to Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald:

“Yeah, of course, it’s something I don’t want to be worried about anymore … If I can play, I can play. You can’t take that away from me. I think it’s easier for me not to be answering the questions you’re asking me right now the whole year.”

Ortiz has been down this road before: he’s wanted multi-year extensions in the past and the Red Sox haven’t been willing, probably thinking that Ortiz could hit a wall at any time.  But despite some partial-year slumps, he’s come roaring back and stands now as the Sox’ best hitter.  Before his injury this year: .318/.415/.611 with 23 home runs, 60 RBI and a 1.026 OPS in 90 games.  He’s gonna get paid by someone.

That said, given the fact that there will be interleague all season going forward, I wonder if Ortiz will be one of the last of the truly full-time DHs.  I wonder if this is the last monster deal a DH signs.  Probably not, but it is weird to see how few of his ilk are around the game.

Report: Welington Castillo to be suspended 80 games for violating Joint Drug Agreement

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic confirms a report from journalist Américo Celado that White Sox catcher Welington Castillo will be suspended 80 games for violating baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement. Castillo was believed to have used a steroid, but according to Rosenthal, the substance was not a steroid. More details should come on Thursday.

Castillo, 31, entered Wednesday’s action batting .270/.314/.477 with six home runs and 15 RBI in 118 plate appearances. He has gotten the bulk of the work behind the plate, backed up by Omar Narváez.

Castillo’s absence will likely prompt the White Sox to call up Kevan Smith from Triple-A Charlotte. Smith battled an ankle injury in March and April, so he got a late start to the season. In 102 PA at Triple-A, he has hit .283/.343/.457.