Red Sox take it slow with Ortiz

Published On March 11, 2013 | By Hung Vong

David Ortiz spent three and a half hours in an MRI machine Saturday and the Red Sox didn’t like what they saw. Inflammation in both of Ortiz’s heels will sentence the designated hitter to at least five-to-seven days of rest. This means that the Sox could be without Ortiz for Opening Day.

On July 16, 2012, Ortiz injured his Achilles’ tendon while running through second base after Adrian Gonzalez hit a home run, his seventh of the season, against the Chicago White Sox. That was the game Kevin Youkilis returned for the first time to Fenway Park in a White Sox uniform and went 3-for-4 with two doubles. The Sox won the game 5-1 after scoring four runs in the 8th inning.

After the game, Ortiz told media members present that “this [expletive] team is cursed!” The team had just been about to return to full strength, as Carl Crawford came back from an injury that day and an injured Jacoby Ellsbury rejoined the lineup a few days earlier.

On Aug. 24, 2012, Ortiz re-injured his Achilles’ when the Sox faced the Kansas City Royals. Ortiz had missed 35 games with the injury, but it didn’t look like he was rusty at all as he collected two hits and two RBIs. Gonzalez was pulled out of the lineup that game with rumors circulating that he was part of a trade being discussed by top Sox brass with the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Sox won the game, 4-3, but Ortiz was sore after the game. He never returned to the lineup again last season.

In November, Ortiz signed a two-year, $26 million contract to stay with the Sox.

Re-injuring his Achilles’ cost Ortiz any momentum he had last year. He had 1.026 OPS, a 0.318 average, 23 homers, and 60 RBIs in 90 games. Had that streak continued, Ortiz was looking at monster numbers–three-digit RBIs and around 40 homers.

For now, the Sox will take it easy with Ortiz. They need to get Ortiz back healthy as soon as possible but dare not rush the healing process. Missing a fortnight worth of games is relatively small compared to the long baseball season ahead of everyone.

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