BOSTON (CBS) — David Ortiz enters spring training in 2014 as a defending champion, months after displaying one of the best World Series performances in history. He further cemented his legendary status in Boston sports, and at 38 years old, he’s due to make a cool $15 million as the Red Sox’ designated hitter this season.
You might think the man would be feeling rather chipper as the new season began. But you’d be wrong.
Ortiz, in an interview with John Tomase of the Boston Herald, went into an expletive-laden tirade on Tuesday when asked about the flak he’s taken for his comments about wanting a contract extension.
“I don’t even know why they’re bitching about me talking about contracts,” Ortiz said of the critics to the Herald. “Guys putting up my numbers, they’re making $25, $30 million. I’m not asking for that. I’m asking for half of it. And they’re still bitching about it?
“[Expletive] them,” Ortiz continued. “I’m tired of hearing them talk [expletive] about me when I talk about my contract. Hey, every time I talk about my contract, I earn it, [expletive]. So don’t be giving me that [expletive].”
Contracts have been a sore spot for Ortiz in recent years, and he’s never been shy to complain about them.
Ortiz seemed in good spirits otherwise on Tuesday, his first day at Red Sox camp, as he spent parts of the day taking his son through drills in the facilities. He also told Tomase that retirement is not on his mind, given the numbers he put up last season.
Tomase called 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Felger & Massarotti program Tuesday afternoon and spoke with Marc Bertrand and Adam Jones about his encounter with Ortiz.
And while it’s good for print and even better for radio, Tomase wanted to set the record straight about the tone of his interview with Ortiz before it gets misconstrued and taken out of context.
“Ortiz did not come into camp in a rage. It’s easy to read those quotes and think that he’s just this angry, angry guy. He’s actually in very good spirits, but this one particular subject really gets his blood flowing and his blood boiling,” said Tomase.
Listen below for the full interview with John Tomase: