Ortiz isn’t in the Red Sox’ lineup for tonight’s series finale at Yankee Stadium, and Red Sox interim manager Torey Lovullo said he intends to meet with the slugger tonight about how much — if at all — he wants to play in the season’s final series in Cleveland. Lovullo noted that the 39-year-old Ortiz is dealing with “general soreness,” perhaps a product of starting 49 of the first 52 games after the all-Star break.
“The body is tired,” Lovullo said. “He’s had a really, really good season. and I don’t want to put him in a situation where he’s going to run up against an injury, out of fairness to him. He played through a lot of days off in that little run that he was on. Chasing 500 home runs was bigger than any day off for me, and I just wanted to make sure the medical team would sign off on it. David wanted to play, and just kept playing him through those days. So he deserves this time down.”
If Ortiz plays against the Indians, Lovullo suggested he might get only a few at-bats in each game before being replaced.
Ortiz is batting .272 with 36 homers, 105 RBI and a .905 OPS, better actually than last season (.263, 35 homers, 104 RBI, .873 OPS). He hit his 500th career home run Sept. 12 at Tampa Bay.