“The good thing is, it didn’t bother me at all. In the beginning, I was a little concerned, and later on I was going after it pretty normal. I didn’t have any setback or anything. I surprised myself.”
He wants to spend the final two years of his career with a winner. He hopes the fans will be patient, but he understands if they’re not.
“To be honest with you, I ran out of patience last year and I’m a player,” he said. “I can imagine the fans, where they’re at. They see what our offseason was like. We went out there and got some of the players to fill where we got hurt last year in those spots. We got our bullpen better. Our starting pitching is going to be better this year.
“As a player, you learn from your mistakes and when things are going bad.”
And, of course, Ortiz was asked about steroids and some players being linked with the clinic in Miami. Because he has been so productive late in his career, will people be suspicious of him?
“I don’t know,” he said. “First of all, when I first heard about that, I started saying, us as baseball players, we might be the dumbest athletes out of all the sports and it’s because there’s a history of players doing things like that and getting caught.
“All I can tell you is that I keep working hard and trying my best. I’m not going to do this for the rest of my life. At some point, enough is enough. As long as your name is not being mentioned in a situation like that, it’s OK.”