BOSTON -- A day after returning to the Red Sox lineup, David Ortiz is once again out of it.
Ortiz will miss Saturday night's game against the Royals with some soreness in his achilles, following his 2-for-4, 2-RBI night on Friday.
"He's a little sore today," said Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine before Saturday's game. "He's not in the lineup. And we're going to meet and evaluate his situation again.
"It bothered him last night. He wasn't as pain-free as he was hoping."
Ortiz spent nearly six weeks on the DL with an achilles strain, and even though the Red Sox were planning on playing him almost every other day upon his return, they realize that nobody involved wants to jeopardize his long-term health.
"I think what would be best for David, if he's healthy, to make sure that everyone knows that he's healthy for the rest of the season," said Valentine. "So, it wouldn't be me shutting him down. If in fact that's what the medical staff thought was best for him this year and for his career, then that might have to happen."
Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington said on Saturday that he's "not really" concerned about Ortiz, with regards to the big picture.
"He's still got some soreness," said Cherington. "We're not concerned that this is something that's going to inhibit him in any significant way, moving forward. We want to be careful and do the right thing for him, because he's such an important player, and we want him to be a part of what we're doing. So, we'll continue to work with him and be cautious, and get him out there whenever he's ready and available."
The Red Sox signed Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo to a seven-year, $72.5 million contract bn August 2014. Over parts of three seasons, the 29-year-old has a .679 OPS across 337 plate appearances in the majors and spent the vast majority of the 2016 season at Triple-A Pawtucket.
Castillo had a chance to start things off on the right foot in 2017, but that ship has already sailed. On Thursday against Northeastern at JetBlue Park, Castillo didn’t run out a routine ground ball. He claims he lost track of the outs. Manager John Farrell isn’t happy about the situation. Via Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald:
“Disappointing for a couple of reasons,” Sox manager John Farrell said. “One, he has lost the number of outs. Still, regardless of another of outs, getting down the line is controllable. And for a player in his situation, every little aspect of the game is important. That’s something that was addressed in the moment. He needs to execute the game situation. And for that matter, every player. But that one obviously stood out.”
Everyone always makes far too big a deal about running out grounders. It’s a real nit to pick when it’s February 23 and your team just finished playing an exhibition game that is even more meaningless than the other exhibition games that will be played in the coming month.
That being said, Castillo has to prove himself to merit inclusion on the 25-man roster and that means dotting all his i’s and crossing all his t’s. Even if he went hitless all spring, Castillo could have at least said he couldn’t have done anything else better. But on day one, he already gave his team a reason to count him out.