Boston, MA, United States (4E Sports) – Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz said his relationship with teammate Ryan Dempster is OK despite his comment regarding the starting pitcher’s offering that drilled New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez.
“He (Dempster) understands,” Ortiz said. “It’s nothing against him or anybody else. He knows I respect everybody.”
At the same time, Ortiz reiterated his objection to Dempster’s throwing at Rodriguez was because “it kind of woke them up.”
“Did I lie about that?” he said. “I think that’s what everybody saw.”
Dempster received a five-game suspension and fine for hitting Rodriguez, whose homer fueled the Yankees 9-6 win over the Red Sox Thursday.
Red Sox manager John Farrell downplayed the potential of any fallout from Ortiz’s remarks. “I don’t think the comments David made would have any lingering effect on the clubhouse,” Farrell said.
“I think what we saw inside that game, that was maybe some added motivation for the Yankees. In the end, they swung the bats very well and we didn’t respond,” he added.
Ortiz said he had not spoken with Dempster since his comment was published by USA TODAY Sports. During the interview, Ortiz said he did not agree with Dempster hitting Rodriguez with a pitch.
“I didn’t like it. I don’t think it was the right thing to do,” Ortiz was quoted as saying during the interview. “But we don’t all think alike, and the guy who did it, Dempster, is a great guy. It’s not that I didn’t think it was right because Alex and I are friends, because once you cross the white lines, everyone’s on their own.”
“But we’ve got Tampa right on our heels, and that pitch woke up a monster in the Yankees’ team at that moment. You saw how the game ended up,” Ortiz added.
Ortiz was back in the lineup at first base Friday after making an early departure in Wednesday’s 12-1 win over the Giants in San Francisco with some lower back tightness.