When David Ortiz hit that walk off home run last night, I think most people were reminded of every big hit he had during 2004. Last night, he drilled the first pitch he saw into the bullpen. True, he hasn't had a walk-off anything since July of 2010, according to the Boston Herald, but if you ask him, he'll tell you that pitchers stopped messing around and just didn't take anymore chances with him. But that's exactly what the Texas Rangers decided to do yesterday when they decided to do when they intentionally walked Dustin Pedroia to get to Papi. My question is "WHY?!?" He may not be as young as he used to be, but he's still a threat. As a Red Sox fan, I'm thankful for whoever made the choice, but as baseball fan, I'm thinking "Who's this stupid?" Whatever the reasoning (maybe a numbers play or match up) I'm glad since I'm a Sox fan above all else.
The walk off embodied the new Red Sox "Never Say Die" attitude this season, and it's a welcome change from the last season plus September 2011. Paip has always played with that attitude, but it's been an issue in the last year-plus.The manager who shall remain nameless never had the respect of the clubhouse and ownership made Terry Francona a scapegoat for a toxic clubhouse and forced him out after the epic collapse in September 2011. The trade that sent Josh Beckett, Adrian Gonzalez, and Carl Crawford to the Dodgers might have been the single greatest trade in recent Sox history. It freed up the cap space to bring real clubhouse leaders to the team. With the change in personnel and management came the change in mentality that has driven the team's success this year, and last night's walk off by Ortiz was just the latest in a long list of examples of the new and improved team attitude.