It’s on like Donkey Kong between David Ortiz and David Price after tonight’s game that saw Ortiz get plunked by a 94 mile-per-hour Price fastball in the first inning of the Red Sox 3-2 extra inning victory.
“First at-bat of the season against him, he drilled me,” Ortiz said. “That’s means it’s a war. It’s on. Next time he hits me, he better bring the gloves on. I have no respect for him no more.
“You can’t be acting like a little girl out there all the time, you give it up, that’s an experience for the next time, but you gonna be acting like a little bitch, every time you give it up, bounce back like that and put your teammates in jeopardy… oh yeah, I was going to let him know…
“I respect everybody in this league, and I get a certain respect from everybody. If you’re mad because I take you deep twice, I’m gonna let you know. I got almost 500 homers in this league, that’s part of the game son. “
Price didn’t say anything to Ortiz after hitting him in the back.
“He knows he screwed up,” Ortiz said. “He did that on his own. No manager was [telling] him. No player was comfortable with the situation. He did that on his own, which is bulls—t, he can get somebody else hurt. You can’t be doing that [expletive].”
In the bottom of the first inning, David Ortiz came up to the plate with two outs and Dustin Pedroia on first base. Big Papi was then unceremoniously plunked by Price on the first pitch he saw from the lefthander — prompting a warning to both benches.
Red Sox manager John Farrell came out to argue the warning and was ejected from the game by home plate umpire Dan Bellino. Farrell was thrown out after just a couple of choice words.
“There were some different things that happened inside this game,” Farrell said after the game. “When we have four people ejected and also have three people hit by pitches, and they have none, that’s a hard one to figure out.
“David’s [Price] a heck of a pitcher. He comes in with two hit batters and eight walks on the year. He’s got the lowest walk-rate in the American League. And when he throws a ball and hits David Ortiz in the back, there is intent to that. And they can dispute that all they want, there is intent to that pitch. As emphatic as [umpire] Dan Bellino’s warning was, it sure seemed like Dan Bellino felt like there was intent as well. I disagreed with it. He took the ball out of our hand and then after Mike Carp got hit with a ball up around his neck, and they didn’t make a move then, the umpires allowed this game to escalate even further.”
While Ortiz flied out in his second at-bat, he got the best of Price in the bottom of the fifth with two out when he smacked a line drive RBI base hit to left field to drive in Xander Bogaerts with the Red Sox first run.
This isn’t the first time Price had an issue with Ortiz. Price suffered through the worst postseason start of his career in Game 2 of the ALDS last October at Fenway, giving up nine hits (six for extra bases), two homers to Ortiz, and every run in the Rays 7-4 loss to the Red Sox.
The second Ortiz home run came in the bottom of the eighth inning in that postseason game. It was a drive down the right field line that wrapped around the Pesky Pole. Ortiz stood at home plate after the blast to see if the ball would stay fair, watching the ball as it took flight down the line.
After the game, Price commented on Ortiz, who was a tad slow to take his victory lap.
“He knows how I’ve pitched him for the last probably year-and-a-half, two years,” Price said. “So he steps in the bucket and hits a homer. And he stares at it to see if it’s fair or foul, I’m sure that’s what he would say, but as soon as he hit it and I saw it I knew it was fair. Run.”