3 Reasons the Boston Red Sox Shouldn't Pay Big Papi
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After an impressive 4-0 sweep of the Detroit Tigers, the 2012 season ends with the San Francisco Giants as world champions.
San Fran fans are sure to be thinking celebration all offseason, but not everyone has that luxury—especially Boston Red Sox fans.
After a tumultuous season that had more drama than winning baseball, the Red Sox are back at square one.
The Sox front office decided to let go of manager Bobby Valentine, but another dilemma presents itself: should they bring back David Ortiz?
Big Papi had a solid season—he hit for .318 with 23 homers and 60 RBI, but his campaign was cut short after an untimely Achilles injury occurred in mid-July.
Now with a team clearly in rebuilding mode, is it really smart to pay a past-his-prime hitter who's about to turn 37 years old in November?
Sure there is still some game left in Big Papi, but it may be time to part ways.
Here are three reasons why the Sox are better off not paying him.
Sox Are in Rebuilding Mode
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Sure Ortiz is still a great player, but at this stage, the team is better off moving on without him.
The Sox just had their worst season (69-93 record) in almost 50 years, and, instead of being stubborn, they should accept that they're in rebuilding mode gracefully.
Paying David Ortiz a big money contract in this stage of the team's life cycle would be unwise.
Rebuilding years are just part of the dynamic, and they would be better off letting Big Papi walk and developing minor league talent instead of keeping him around.
It's tough to accept, but the sooner the Sox move on sans Big Papi, the sooner they'll be adjusted without him.
Big Papi Breaking Down?
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After his Achilles injury this season, Ortiz went on to play in the least amount of games (he played 90) in his career since his 89-game 2001 season—back when he was a Minnesota Twin.
After deciding to shut down and ensure his recovery goes smoothly, Big Papi decided to not play for the rest of the season.
Former manager Bobby Valentine went as far as to claim (via bostonherald.com) Ortiz was purposely milking the injury following the mid-season trade that sent Adrian Gonzalez to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Based on whose side you're on, either Ortiz exaggerated the injury, or it was more severe than let on.
Was it a wise move on Ortiz's part or a sign of more setbacks this season if he's re-signed? Of course at this point, no one knows for certain, but, at age 36, injuries will undoubtedly begin to creep in after years of wear and tear.
Signing Big Papi to another big money contract could pose a huge risk if Ortiz isn't healthy enough to last another full season.
Is He Worth the Price Tag at This Point?
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This past season, Ortiz was paid a whopping $14,575,000 for one year.
Of course, Ortiz has to be given the benefit of the doubt considering his injury, but another huge contract—even if it is just a year—is not worth having your big money player just sit out for most of the year while your team wallows in misery.
Ortiz will turn 37 in November, and at this point, there's no way he should be paid anywhere near that much considering the climate the team is in.
Sure, Papi is worth the price tag if you're a fringe contender, but for the Sox, they're better off letting him walk.
There is no sense in giving Ortiz a big contract after a season the Sox just had—unless of course you wanted to sell tickets rather than win ballgames.
From a business standpoint, it would make sense signing Ortiz to bring fans to games, but if they're serious about ensuring their money is well spent, they should either try to get him to settle for less, or just let someone else pay him altogether.