BOSTON — David Ortiz indicated this week that he wouldn’t hesitate to walk away from the Boston Red Sox after this season if he doesn’t get the contract extension he is seeking.
The reigning World Series MVP told a Boston TV station that he wants to play at least two more seasons – and perhaps many more – and would like to do so with the Red Sox, with whom he’s played the last 11 seasons and won three championship rings.
Ortiz, 38, is entering the final season of a two-year deal and will make $15 million in 2014.
But, he said, if the team doesn’t make him a suitable offer, “it’s time to move on.”
“It’s been a hell of a ride as long as I’ve been here,” he told Steve Burton on WBZ-TV’s “Sports Final.” “But like I always keep on telling people, this is business. Sometimes you’ve got to do what is best for you and your family. As long as they keep offering me a job and I keep on doing what I’m supposed to do and the relationship keeps on building up, I’m going to be there. Hopefully I won’t have to go and wear another uniform.”
The slugging designated hitter batted .309 with 30 home runs and 103 RBI last year and feels he can put up similar numbers for years to come – even if he has to do it for a team other than the Red Sox.
“If I have to, I’ve got no choice,” Ortiz said. “I’m not going to quit. As long as I keep on hitting the ball the way I have, I’m going to keep on giving it a try.”
YANKEES: Authorities say a New York pitching prospect was arrested for drunken driving in Tampa, Fla.
Police say 21-year-old Omar Luis Rodriguez was pulled over early Friday morning and charged with driving under the influence. Hillsborough County jail records show he was later released on $500 bail.
Tampa officers reported Rodriguez was driving a red Mercedes the wrong direction on a one-way street. Tests determined his blood-alcohol to be 0.10 percent. Florida law considers a driver impaired at 0.08 percent.
Rodriguez defected from Cuba in 2012 and received a multimillion-dollar signing bonus from the Yankees that year. He played in the Gulf Coast Rookie League last year.
Rodriguez drew international attention pitching for Cuba in the 2010 World Junior Baseball Championship.
INDIANS: Versatile free-agent infielder Elliott Johnson has agreed to a minor league contract that includes an invitation to training camp.
The 29-year-old split last season between Kansas City and Atlanta. He batted .261 with five doubles, two triples and 10 RBI as the Braves’ regular second baseman over the final five weeks.
He was claimed off waivers on Aug. 21.
REDS: Infielder Chris Nelson and Cincinnati Reds agreed to a minor league contract.
The 28-year-old third baseman played for the Rockies, Yankees and Angels last season, batting a combined .227 with three homers and 24 RBI in 64 games.
BREWERS: Milwaukee signed veteran utilityman Pete Orr to a minor league contract. Orr hit .200 with no homers or RBI in 20 at-bats over 15 games last season for the Phillies.