It’s Judgement Day For David Ortiz and Arbitration


Today we find out who will win the arbitration hearing between David Ortiz and the Boston Red Sox.  While it shouldn’t sound like a standoff between the iconic slugger and the team that has embraced him as a hero, that’s the uneasy feeling you get when you read about the process.

Both sides will present their case to a three-person panel in a hotel room in St. Petersburg, Florida.  The Sox offered $12.65 million while Big Papi wants $16.5 million.  Last season he made $12.5 million, so the Sox don’t see the need for much of a raise if you want to call it that.

There is the possibility of striking a deal prior to the hearing, but Ortiz wants a multi-year deal, something the Sox have been reluctant to offer.  They had offered a two-year deal back before Christmas but it was for a total of $18 million over two years and that offer was quickly shot down.

Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe reports that the Sox are confident in their case, feeling that Ortiz has asked for too much.  A middle point would be $14.58 million but if the Sox are that confident why strike a deal prior to the hearing?  Seeing how these proceedings often lead to the player feeling like he’s been thrown under the bus and is under appreciated, that’s the last thing the Sox need right now.  The Red Sox will build a case against Ortiz trying to emmulate their points as to why he’s not worth $16.5 million.  It’s hard to think that a sensitive player such as Big Papi won’t take offense while he’s sitting their listening to that.  Especially when you consider all that he’s done for this organization.

Regardless of who wins, should this case go to arbitration it will be the largest arbitration award in history.  Is that something to be proud of?  I think not having a player go to arbitration since 2002, the last time the Sox had a hearing, is more impressive.

We’ll find out later today.

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