Redskins

AP source: Red Sox, Ortiz strike $26M, 2-year deal

AP source: Red Sox, Ortiz strike $26M, 2-year deal

BOSTON (AP) The Red Sox and designated hitter David Ortiz have agreed to a two-year deal worth $26 million that could allow one of the breakout stars of the franchise's cathartic 2004 World Series victory to retire in a Boston uniform.

A baseball official with knowledge of the negotiations said Friday night that the deal, with incentive bonuses, could bring Ortiz as much as $30 million in the 2013 and '14 seasons. The official spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been signed.

Red Sox president Larry Lucchino said the team had nothing to announce. Ortiz's agent, Fern Cuza, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Speaking at the Celtics' home opener against the Milwaukee Bucks on Friday night, Ortiz said, ``We haven't finished it up yet.''

``It's coming,'' he said as he walked back to his courtside seat at the TD Garden ``It's coming.''

But fans who had heard about the deal were already shouting their congratulations to the player beloved in Boston as ``Big Papi.'' The crowd cheered when he was shown on the scoreboard at the end of the third quarter, and he acknowledged the support by raising his left arm straight up.

One of the most popular players in Red Sox history, Ortiz now has a chance to finish his career in the city where it was rejuvenated after he was waived by the Minnesota Twins following the 2003 season. Ortiz signed with the Red Sox and became an immediate star, batting .288 with 31 homers and 101 RBIs in his first season.

But it was in 2004 that Ortiz provided some of the signature moments in Red Sox history.

After a season in which he had a .301 average, and career highs of 41 homers and 139 RBIs, Ortiz batted .545 in the first-round series against the Angels. With the Red Sox facing elimination in Game 4 of the AL championship series against the New York Yankees, Ortiz hit a game-ending homer in the 12th inning and then delivered another game-winning hit in Game 5 as Boston rallied from an 0-3 deficit to win in seven games.

Ortiz had four hits - two for extra bases - in 13 at-bats and four walks against the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series, which the Red Sox won in four games to end an 86-year title drought. In the 2007 postseason, when Boston won it all for a second time, Ortiz batted .370 with 14 walks in 14 games for an on-base percentage of .508.

An eight-time All-Star, Ortiz hit a team-record 54 homers in 2006 and was batting .318 with 23 homers and 60 RBIs this season before injuring his right Achilles tendon. He played in just one game after July 16.

Ortiz, who will turn 37 this month, is a career .285 hitter with 401 homers and 1,386 RBIs. His 343 homers in a Red Sox uniform is fifth on Boston's career list and his 1,088 RBIs is sixth in franchise history.

Ortiz was a free agent and able to discuss money with all teams at midnight. The Red Sox made him a $13.3 million qualifying offer, but the sides continued negotiating and reached an agreement a few hours later.

Boston did not make qualifying offers Friday to right-handers Aaron Cook, Daisuke Matsuzaka and Vicente Padilla; first baseman James Loney; and outfielders Scott Podsednik and Cody Ross.

---

AP Sports Writer Howard Ulman contributed to this report.

Quick Links

The Kerrigans are having a baby and, WOW, this is all so very exciting

screen_shot_2018-10-16_at_5.55.43_pm.png
@kerrigan91

The Kerrigans are having a baby and, WOW, this is all so very exciting

The Kerrigan family is about to make a big-time addition to its roster.

Ryan and his wife, Jessica, already have two very, VERY, very, very cute bulldogs in their household. 

But on Tuesday, the two announced in separate Instagram posts that Jessica is 18 weeks pregnant and that a third human Kerrigan will arrive in 2019.

"Can I eat dis sign aftur da picturr iz over?" George the bulldog said when reached for comment on the news.

"How did dey gett such a smawl jerzey for da baby alreddy?" Franklin the other bulldog added.

This is all very wonderful.

Come next March, the world is about to get a little precious-er.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS:

Quick Links

The Caps are a bad faceoff team, here’s what they’re doing about it

capsfaceoff.png
USA Today Sports

The Caps are a bad faceoff team, here’s what they’re doing about it

Tuesday’s practice was a lot like every other for the Caps until the end. After working on the power play, the team gathered at one end of the ice and began working on faceoffs. It was not just the centers, but wingers and defensemen alike got into the action with every win celebrated by loud cheers from teammates.

It should could as no surprise to see faceoffs as a point of emphasis for Washington considering just how much the team has struggled with them in the early season. The Caps rank 30th in the league in faceoff win percentage at only 43.8-percent.

“Yeah, there's little details that can help our game,” Lars Eller told reporters after practice. “The more you have the puck, easier the game is gonna be for you. We have a little more time in between games than usual during the season here, so we have the time to work on something like that, which can be little things that makes the difference.”

The team as a whole watched video on faceoffs prior to practice and then worked as a five-man unit during the drill. The main point of emphasis head coach Todd Reirden wanted to drill into his players was that faceoffs are not simply the responsibility of the centers alone.

“The days of it just being center vs. center and a clean draw being won back are a rarity now so it's important to have all five guys helping, something we watched video on earlier today,” Reirden said.

“You ask any centerman if they have a good group of wingers that can help them out on draws, that makes a huge difference,” Nic Dowd said. “I've been lucky, I have [Devante Smith-Pelly] on my right and I'm a righty so I win all my draws my backhand side so a lot of pucks go his way and he wins a lot of draws for me. That's huge. You have a guy that's sitting over there that's sleeping, you could go easily from five wins to five losses and then that's your night. It makes a big difference.”

Faceoffs were always going to be more of a struggle for the Caps this season with the departure of Jay Beagle who was, by far, the team’s best faceoff man for several years. Whenever the team needed a big draw, Beagle was the player relied upon to win it. With him gone, it is no surprise to see the team struggle.

But the Caps don’t like the idea of keeping possession off a draw just 43.8-percent of the time.

“It's essentially like the ref is creating a 50-50 puck and you snap it back, you get possession, now you're forechecking and it makes a huge difference,” Dowd said. “You play against those top lines, they want to be in the O-zone. Well, if you lose the draw, now you're playing D-zone, you win the draw now you're playing O-zone. So effectively, you've shut down their shift.”

There is a school of thought suggesting that perhaps the importance of winning faceoffs is overrated and a team’s faceoff win percentage is not overly important. Eller himself admitted as much to reporters.

What no one can argue, however, is that while some faceoffs may not matter all that much, there are some that are hugely important in a game. The Caps recognize that. For them, being a strong faceoff team is not necessarily about improving the team’s win percentage, but more about being able to win those critical draws.

“It's something that for the most part the players understand and a neutral zone faceoff with 14 minutes to go in the first period is not nearly as important as one that's 5-on-6 at the end of the game,” Reirden said. “We all know that. It's important to put the right people on those situations and give them the best chance to have success.”

“A center ice draw, I could see where guys could make the argument, well you lose it you still will play hockey and stuff could still happen,” Dowd said. “But I think the game is such a possession game now that any opportunity you can win a 50-50 puck whether that's a faceoff or a board battle, it makes a huge difference.”

 

MORE CAPITALS NEWS: