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Ortiz’s bat flip inflames tabloids more than the Yankees

Jun 8, 2011, 8:25 AM EDT

David Ortiz AP

As Matthew mentioned last night, David Ortiz flipped his bat in a somewhat flamboyant style after hitting his two-run homer off Hector Noesi in the top of the fifth (video here).  After the game, Joe Girardi said “I didn’t really care for it,” inasmuch as it was kind of showing up Noesi.

After that, however, he actually made a point to say that Ortiz plays hard and plays the game the right way and suggested that, no, there wouldn’t be any sort of retaliation about it. He and other Yankees quoted about the matter more or less said that’s Papi being Papi, that it’s nothing new and that while they wish he didn’t hit a homer against them, it was no big deal. A-Rod talked about the kind of respect Yankees players have for the Red Sox.

But despite all of these quotes, the headline stack this morning at the Daily News had links to stories titled “Ortiz’s show drives Yanks batty,” and “Yanks may need to retaliate.”  The latter one is a link to a John Harper column that repeats all of those “it’s no big deal” quotes yet somehow concludes that Girardi believes that retaliation is in order and predicts that some form of retaliation will come before the series is over.

Is the manager saying “I didn’t much care for it,” just a low-key rallying cry? I guess we’ll know after tonight and Thursdays games, but this reads more like an instance in which a tabloid is wishing and hoping for fireworks than rationally gauging their likelihood.

  1. paperlions - Jun 8, 2011 at 8:45 AM

    Who cares?

    Is it not possible for a player to do something because they are happy with what happened? Apparently not. Apparently, any response whatsoever is considered showing up the other team. Are players now supposed to be sorry for hitting home runs? Must they immediately apologize to the pitcher for demonstrating that his pitching ability has not reached perfection? This is all just silly….and I can’t help but think most of it is driven by old white journalists that interpret any kind of flare as a negative characteristic.

    • heynerdlinger - Jun 8, 2011 at 8:57 AM

      Are players now supposed to be sorry for hitting home runs?


      • paperlions - Jun 8, 2011 at 9:12 AM

        I was just going down the gradient of possible responses to hitting a HR. Ortiz barely did anything at all, and that got peoples panties in a bunch? Apparently, if you are satisfied with your performance, you must contain that enthusiasm to ensure that you don’t hurt the feelings of the other adults present.

    • pjmarn6 - Jun 8, 2011 at 8:49 PM

      If Girardi would get off his a** and fire up the yankee team as much as he fires up the opposition the fans would appreciate his big mouth and comments. I see a fat bloated team that is just drifting along with no goals in sight. A manager who has a 1.5 million dollar home in Florida spending a lot of time with his architect building a 2 million dollar home in Illinois. Where is the spark drive and butt kicking to get the team moving? Hell the Red Sox were 2 and 8 and now in first place. If the yannkees had one player hitting a few less home runs, they would be fighting it for 3rd or 4th place. There is no spirit, drive or zest in the team. And that is what the manager is there for to drive the team.

  2. paperlions - Jun 8, 2011 at 8:48 AM

    …and if that is what people are bitching about…they are just looking for something about which to complain. This is the sports equivalent of politically correct people in the office that actively look for any comment, no matter how innocent, that can be construed as sexist, racist, or non-PC

    • heynerdlinger - Jun 8, 2011 at 8:55 AM

      You really want to turn this into a story about “politically correct”?

      There’s one question here: Is what Ortiz did disrespectful of the opponent?

      Personally, I think it’s more than was called for, especially considering that it would have been an out in most ballparks. But they also buzzed him with the previous pitch, so I can understand the demonstrative flip-spin-jog around the bases..

      • paperlions - Jun 8, 2011 at 9:15 AM

        Are you just trying to be obtuse? I was just drawing a comparison. This type of response by sports writers is analogous to the types of responses we all hate in other aspects of life…but for some reason people accept it from the sports writers.

        And technically, this type of sports media response is political correctness. We are being told what is acceptable social behavior for particular situations to ensure that the little feelings of the other professional athletes are not bruised.

      • heynerdlinger - Jun 8, 2011 at 10:29 AM

        Nothing stops, nothing… or you will do the hardest time there is. No more protection from the guards. I’ll pull you out of that one-bunk Hilton and throw you down with the sodomites…

        I’m not trying to be obtuse. I think it’s exaggerating the point to compare the criticism of bat flips, twirls, slow jogs, and other posturing in a sports context to discussions of sexist, racist, or homophobic language.

        I don’t think these are analogous at all, and I don’t think the criticism of sport-posturing has anything to do with the feelings of the opponent. Celebration of success is fine, but don’t act like a jackass.

        Ortiz is one of my favorite players, but that shot was what… 350 feet? That’s a can of corn at Fenway.

      • spindervish - Jun 8, 2011 at 1:59 PM

        That may have been some jackassery on Ortiz’s part, but regardless, lion’s analogy was perfectly fine. You’re just being difficult. A jackass, if you will.

    • spudchukar - Jun 8, 2011 at 10:45 AM

      While I am still in the corner of “Act like you been there before”, responses to success, the show of exuberance, if within reason, is certainly acceptable. Hitting a baseball is still tough to do, and smacking one good brings euphoria, and if it accompanied by a little esprit de corps, who cares.

    • aceshigh11 - Jun 8, 2011 at 10:47 AM

      Ah, yes…it’s the fault of LIBERALS, right?

      When in doubt…blame a liberal.

      • spindervish - Jun 8, 2011 at 2:03 PM

        There’s a difference between being a liberal and being the kind of nitpicking asshole lion describes in the above post.

    • jpeetey - Jun 8, 2011 at 3:11 PM

      As annoying as the people who refuse to acknowledge legitimate complaints or criticisms and instead pigeonhole them in an attempt to rail against “political correctness”.

  3. unsatisfiedmind - Jun 8, 2011 at 8:51 AM

    I didn’t see Ortiz’s AB but I was listening to the radio feed and they implied that earlier in the AB Noesi had gone in on Ortiz in what the announcers thought was an apparent attempt to retaliate for Teix. They suggested Ortiz’s HR flourish was a direct response to Noesi’s failed HBP attempt.

    Anyone see the AB? Does that excuse hold water?

    • adowding3 - Jun 8, 2011 at 8:55 AM

      i was just about to comment. I’m not sure if it was retaliation for the teix/martin HBP’s but Noesi definitely came way in on Ortiz. He did a good job of avoiding that pitch, and a few moments later had gone deep. I don’t think Papi was trying to show off, merely making a statement to a no-named pitcher…

    • Paul White - Jun 8, 2011 at 9:13 AM

      As adowding3 just said, it struck me that the Yanks were trying to hit Ortiz in the legs in retaliation for Teixeira and Martin. They missed him and then, on the very next pitch, he hit it out, thus the bat flip. I haven’t read the NY papers, but if they ignored that sequence then they’re just spin doctoring for their own purposes. Shocking, I know.

      • aceshigh11 - Jun 8, 2011 at 10:48 AM

        That just makes the outcome even sweeter.

  4. yankeesfanlen - Jun 8, 2011 at 9:20 AM

    Tsk, tsk. Big Papi was simple demonstrating to Bryce Harper how silly he looks.

    • heynerdlinger - Jun 8, 2011 at 10:31 AM

      At least Ortiz isn’t doing it in the Sally league.

  5. Jonny 5 - Jun 8, 2011 at 9:29 AM


    • natstowngreg - Jun 8, 2011 at 1:45 PM

      Proof that brevity is the soul of wit.

  6. tuftsb - Jun 8, 2011 at 10:45 AM

    Tommy Lawless approved of Ortiz’ flip.

    Isn’t it great that some reporter sitting in air conditioning in the press box can start whining about how someone who is actually in the arena should take action due to some moral slight in order to fan the flames and sell his work?

    If you cannot get people out, find another profession. if you have to threaten someone’s health and career because they hurt your feelings, you’re weak.

    Perhaps we should get the BBWAA to suspend Harper from covering games for a few days? That idea makes more sense than Girardi’s whinigs

  7. aceshigh11 - Jun 8, 2011 at 10:47 AM

    Ortiz is having a badass year thus far.

    Eff the crybabies.

  8. ryanmallettsbluntwrap - Jun 8, 2011 at 11:00 AM

    Why does anyone ever use the ” that is a can of corn at fenway ” or whatever park it may be , like when Gonzalez hit that walk off double off the monster a couple weeks ago ” that ball is out in any other ball park , he just got lucky .” Who cares were it was a can of corn , were it would have been a home run , your playing at THAT ballpark , everyone is different , so to compare ball parks doesn’t make sense at all .

    • heynerdlinger - Jun 8, 2011 at 11:45 AM

      The point of the comment is only that Ortiz shouldn’t have been so sure of himself when he hit it. That ball doesn’t get out in most parks, but Papi acted like he just hit one 500 feet.

  9. cur68 - Jun 8, 2011 at 11:02 AM

    I got no problem with Big Papi’s bat flip. Unlike Harper, he did the one thing directly after he’d nearly been drilled and then let it go at that. Harper not only hit his tater, he admired it for yonks, taunted the pitcher and was still jawing as he get to the dugout. Ortiz flipped his bat after a jack that came on the heels of a near plunking. To me that’s acting like you been there before.

    • heynerdlinger - Jun 8, 2011 at 11:47 AM

      Not to mention that he did it in the American League, against their long-time rival, in a game that leapfrogged his team over said opponent for first place.

      • Ralphie - Jun 8, 2011 at 2:22 PM

        We have a winner. Which leads to…

        “The category is, Yankees / Red Sox Rivalry”

        “I’ll take Yankee / Red Sox Rivalry for $1000 Alex”

        Alex: “The best time and place to strut your stuff at Yankee stadium?”

        Contestant: What is, when you play in the American league, against your long-time rival, in a game that leapfrogs you over your rival for first place.

        Alex: “You are correct sir, for $1000

  10. mornelithe - Jun 8, 2011 at 11:21 AM

    I don’t really see how the flipping of a bat is considered disrespectful, honestly. I saw the AB, saw Noesi go inside on him, saw the HR and the ‘flip’. Didn’t really strike me as anything special, honestly. And how many people were really watching the bat at the time he flipped it? The ball was in the air still, wasn’t it?

    Regardless, I was concerned when Tex got hit, people getting hit by pitches isn’t something I like seeing in Baseball, and no matter the talent, nobody wants to see someone seriously injured by it either. Certainly glad Tex is ok though, I’m a Sox fan, but I prefer seeing both teams go at it full strength.

    I hope there’s no retaliation from the Yanks, I’m not entirely sure Noesi was trying to tag Papi, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. But, the tit for tat BS should never be tolerated. 90+ MPH can do serious damage if they hit you in the right place, and only people with a grade-school level mentality, should be exhibiting such behavior.

    • mornelithe - Jun 8, 2011 at 11:24 AM

      Oh yeah, also meant to say Lester wasn’t on his game last night at all. I don’t condone either beans, in the slightest, but his command was absolutely off. I think the Yankee’s players and fans could both see that…even THEY expect a better level of control from Lester. Hopefully, the rest of the Sox starts can lock their command down a bit better for this series.

  11. ingloriousmaster - Jun 8, 2011 at 12:36 PM

    I find a player giving thanks to god every time he gets a hit much more insulting than flipping a bat after a monster homerun. Plus, Ortiz has every right too, he’s been on fire and along with Gonzo, has carried the Sox.

  12. tk1966 - Jun 8, 2011 at 2:00 PM

    I read the story and comments and thought to myself “C’mon Ortiz, don’t be an ass…”, but then I watched the video, and now my thoughts are “This is a story???”

  13. patsandsox - Jun 8, 2011 at 3:54 PM

    After all the grief Ortiz has had to take the last two season about being all done and over the hill, I think its understandable that he is enjoying himself this year.

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