ďA lot of positive comments,Ē Ortiz said. ďIt was something I said. I donít know how emotional I get sometimes. What weíve been through this week, that was my feeling. I was hurting like everyone else. Thatís how I am.Ē
ďThatís the most famous (bad word) of all time,Ē he kidded.
Ortiz ended a pregame address to the Fenway Park crowd Saturday by saying, ďthis is our (expletive) city." It was the Red Sox' first appearance at Fenway since the Boston Marathon bombing and subsequent manhunt for the suspects, and an emotional ceremony was held before the game.
Ortiz has been impressive at the plate, with five hits in his first two games, including three in a 4-2 loss to the Royals in Game 1 of Sundayís doubleheader. One was double, but when kidded about whether heís become a singles hitter he said, ďDavid Ichiro Ortiz.Ē
Ortiz, who was not in the starting lineup of the second game of the doubleheader, said heís actually not happy with the way he feels at the plate and alluded to having some discomfort in the opposite heel from his Achilles' injury, perhaps due to overcompensating.
ďIím battling right now. Trying to do too much. Havenít faced good pitching for months. Iím not gonna lie to you, I donít feel good at the plate right now,Ē he said.
So how has he managed five hits?
ďIíve been lucky,Ē Ortiz said. ďI donít feel yet the way I like to feel. Just getting to the point where mentally Iím just dealing with the injury I had last year and getting to the point where Iím 100 percent. Besides that, being able to sit on my legs and be where I like to be.Ē
How close to normal is he?
ďIt all depends. In my case right now, probably Iíve been doing good contact with the ball but Iím not quite there yet. Iíve only played a few games Ė five in Triple-A where they were pitching me like they normally pitch me. I was just trying to hit the ball and run. I was swinging at bad pitches. I ran couple of times and it feels good.
ďBut Iím not quite there. I was out too long. I wasnít seeing pitches. You see the way they pitch me the last two days,Ē he said.
Ortiz said getting back all the way is both a mental and physical exercise.
ďMy injury is fine right now, but Iím having some issues with the other (right) side just from not being able to do what I can normally do from this side. Not bad, nothing crazy, I can deal with it. Itíll get better, thatís what the doctor said. Iím not gonna be concerned about it.Ē
Ortiz said it would have been hard to play two games.
ďItís hard. They donít want me to have too much going on this early. Just coming back. They want to make sure I play through the season, We donít want to risk it.Ē
He said he was available to pinch-hit.