WEEI>On Demand>>Spring Training Report: David Ortiz talks contract, John Henry talks spending

Spring Training Report: David Ortiz talks contract, John Henry talks spending

Feb 19, 2014|

WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Alex Speier discuss David Ortiz's latest comments on his contract, as well as the Red Sox' finances.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

Welcome to another gorgeous day here jetBlue park in Fort Myers, Florida home of the 2014. Red Sox spring training. I'm Mike to try had joined by WEEI dot com senior baseball writer. Covering the Red Sox of course that is Alex spear. Alex today the big story of course David Ortiz spoke. A lot of people wanna note does he think he'll be back with the Red Sox will be a one year deal will be a multi year deal after his contract expires after 2014. What brief -- your. Key takeaways from the press conference today. Ortiz reiterated that he's looking for a one year extension beyond the 2014 contract but he has he says that you know he says that he feels like he's earned the right for that it's a question of -- he did he did say that he views it is a question of respect. As much as he does that it's a contract and he said that look. I'm one of the greatest Red Sox of all time when he said I don't like to say that usually bad sometimes good to remind people were critical. Of my desire to when I expressed my desire for a contract it's not like there's some schmo saying he wants the contract this is the guy who's been. One of the most consistent performers in Red Sox history saying that he wants to continue that relationship in -- -- thought made an important point. Which I don't think has made enough namely. You know Jon Lester we lionized for saying that he wants take a hometown discount. David Ortiz is saying that he wants to take a hometown discount because what he's saying. If he wants to take a one year deal he said look if we get to the off season is going to be a different then they were really talking about a contract was that we've is -- And look if David Ortiz gets to free agency after a productive year. Then some crazy things can happen with other teams conceivably. Offering him multiple years -- gets the less of an area of comfort. For the Red Sox so I think that Ortiz is Ortiz is. Feels as a little bit embattled it seems like with those were critical of his desire. Two to stay in Boston beyond the current term of his contract. And he also made the point number of times but it's not like I'm going out in asking people to ask me about my contract. People ask me about their contract and -- -- like David Ortiz said I'm legit I'm straight Florida if you ask me question I'm going to answer it. You guys ask me contract questions Ollie and have them he wasn't staying at the Red Sox. Let me ask you Alex we were both there and we heard him also say that. He uses the haters says he he said today as motivation. And particularly the talk shows that talk radio all of the hype around his contract. As motivation do you think deep down it really does motivate him. No he's -- he's been awesome in his career he doesn't need any extra motivated a damn about what he's stepping to the plate he's not thinking about the haters you thinking I'm David bleeping Ortiz. And. I don't think that it makes a lot of difference whether or not he has that motivation or not because. Let's face it we've seen him be an outstanding player at times when he's had long term job security. We've seen him be an outstanding player times and he's been playing for his next contract. I don't think that's what I don't really think that that is. What fuels David Ortiz what -- David Ortiz is a an intense desire to be really good to be part of a championship. Club in the hard work that he wants to put into into pursuing those goals he's 38 years of age Alex does he finished his. Realistically finish his his career here in Boston and does he belong in the hall of fame those two questions. But he does finish his career in Boston I think that it's you know be ridiculous I think that the Red Sox. Are mindful that it would be a PR disaster. If you ever went elsewhere this the guy. Who you make a point of keeping around does he finished his career in the hall of fame that's a far more complicated question. In particular by virtue of the positive test regardless of how you view that the positive test in 2003. Whether or not it was legitimate let's not forget that the players union and indeed MLB both kind of came out and Ortiz is defense after that one. But nonetheless they're going to be a lot of people who will not vote for him simply because of thought of that positive test in. You know they've you understand where those people are coming from certainly. Regardless of your own feelings about -- about Ortiz and and how he came about his kind of remarkably consistent career track record -- Absence questions of morality and ethics you would assume that Ortiz whose career by track record would suggest out of a hall of Famer whether or not. People conclude that he's -- -- another matter entirely. About 45 minutes after -- David Ortiz finished up his about roughly twenty minute news conference on the bench here outside the left field wall. It was John Henry's turn to take to the bench and obviously the Red Sox principal owner the first question he was asked was about David Ortiz. And does a deal get done in in his mind before spring training ends because David Ortiz even admitted that he wants to get this done. Sooner than later because he doesn't want to become a distraction. What were the key takeaways from John Henry's address to reporters Henry said that it. His quote conceivable. Quote -- and quote did -- did a deal with Ortiz and extension could be done over the course of spring training. And he noted luck everyone is here right now. Red Sox ownership is here. Red Sox front office members are here Ortiz is here Ortiz is agent is here so be stupid not to have everyone who's in Fort Myers sit down in the same room at the same time and figure out if there's common ground if there is good they can get an extension done perhaps. If there's not well then they know that -- so bacon -- can then figure out how to move forward throughout the season but. Henry also noted that even if a contract extension isn't done in spring training that doesn't rule out the possibility that when would be done. At a at a subsequent point but he suggested there would be clarity about how they'll be proceeding in spring training. In relatively short order here. Something John Henry also touched on where. You know sometimes it would seem funny to say this but sometimes teams can have too much money. But more specifically not know how to spend. Spend it on there resources John Henry touched on that Alex and you're somebody who doesn't just cover obviously major the Major League aspect of the Boston Red Sox. You're very very ID tailed in your coverage of the minor league system. How does John Henry. Plan to go about spending his numerous resources. It's hard though look you can have. Payroll flexibility at this -- you can have considerable resources. It used to be that there are -- there were ways outside of Major League payroll. That you could invest those resources you can mix he could spend beyond the slot recommendations on -- on the amateur draft in the US. He could spend to be you could spend a ton of money in the international market for guys in that kind of sixteen to twenty year old age bracket. You can't do that anymore at least not. Without penalties for Major League Baseball in ultimately without losing certain draft picks or certain flexibility in those markets going forward. And so as a result. There's this point at which you have available resources but you don't know necessarily what you're going to spend them on and that comes at a really interesting point for the Red Sox because even though. They they have a lot of money committed for this coming season up. Before Ryan Dempster decide he was -- step away from the season thirteen and a half million right at thirteen point 25 million dollars they had. They were right there were going to be pushing right up against the luxury tax threshold now they have they have about thirteen million dollars to play with but. Next year they have 83 million dollars coming off the books and it's going to be hard to spend that money. Because the free because free agency has become a tough proposition. You saw the Red Sox are trying to step away from the model of the kind of long term deals the Carl Crawford deals -- ended up kind of limiting their flexibility so. They're faced with this question. Where does that money go and embarrass. They're there are some different possibilities but they're still kind of racking their brains to get the best ones real quickly this is Wednesday. It was physicals today obviously first -- squad workout is scheduled for Thursday. The John Carroll also spoke as he does every day any surprises. I thought that the mention of Jonny Gomes is a potential leadoff hitter was a little bit unexpected. But it Farrell noted that luck that's just the possibility let's say that they find a really comfortable lineup spot -- -- in a -- say that he hits fifth. Right after Mike Napoli keep working the count right in front of -- -- Bogart's. -- domes would be a consideration for the leadoff role per per presumably against left hand pitching because he posed -- great on base numbers. Against them so I I thought that was perhaps the most does the most striking part of part of what John Farrell discussed today. All right day number three in the books here in fort Meyers tomorrow perhaps bench Harrington Red Sox general manager. Will address reporters will wait and see what happens there but for Alex spear. I'm Mike which rally -- at jetBlue park in Fort Myers WEEI. Dot com.

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