Ortiz: It is a a lot murkier state of affairs although Huge Papi in all probability has extra “integrity/character/sportsmanship” clause baggage than nearly anybody else on the poll. It begins with him being revealed in a 2009 New York Occasions report, together with A-Rod, Sammy Sosa and Manny Ramirez, in a group of roughly 100 players who tested positive in a 2003 nameless drug testing survey performed by MLB and the gamers union. On the time, Ortiz didn’t deny the report, saying solely he couldn’t make certain if he’d ever taken an unlawful substance — however there isn’t a query, after being signed by the Crimson Sox in 2003, following his launch by the Twins, his profession had exceptional energy surge halfway by way of that season, which didn’t stop till accidents started taking a toll in 2012. However, once more, Manfred has taken pains to mushy peddle the drug allegations round Ortiz, telling USA As we speak in 2016: “Even when your identify was on that [anonymous] checklist, it’s solely attainable that you weren’t a constructive. I don’t assume anybody understands very properly what that was.” OK. No matter. However in relation to the “integrity/character/sportsmanship” clause, it’s awfully arduous to disregard Huge Papi’s lengthy, sordid historical past of relationships with drug sellers within the Dominican Republic — a truth of life that got here to a head in June 2019 when he was the nearly killed in a botched hit job purportedly ordered by drug sellers. In his 2018 book “Baseball Cop,” Eddie Dominguez, a former member of MLB’s Division of Investigations, particulars Ortiz’s shut relationship with a convicted Dominican drug supplier nicknamed “Monga.” In accordance with Dominguez, “Monga” had been a continuing companion of Ortiz in 2005 and 2006, with entry to the Crimson Sox clubhouse, and amongst different issues was alleged to have positioned massive bets on baseball, even on the Crimson Sox, at a Dominican barbershop in Boston, earlier than being arrested by ICE and deported. Regardless of all this, baseball has appeared the opposite manner on Ortiz’s “integrity/character” points and he stays a hero to Crimson Sox proprietor John Henry and the Fenway trustworthy.

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