David Ortiz

Tony Sipp explains why he didn't want to walk David Ortiz: 'He's not the same Big Papi'

Mike Petraglia
July 05, 2015 - 2:30 pm
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David Ortiz has built his reputation on putting fear in opposing pitchers with his clutch power hitting late in games. But with one out and none on and the Astros leading 4-3 in the bottom of the seventh, fear was not on the mind of lefty Tony Sipp, who was brought in by Houston manager A.J. Hinch to face Ortiz. "I got ahead. I was just trying to go right at him, do anything but walk him," Sipp said. "I got the 1-2 slider and it started backing up on me. I couldn't get the one that was sharp that looked like a strike and then [would] fade out of the strike zone. That's why he kept fouling off and he was a little disappointed because he was missing some of my mistakes. "Right there at the end, I threw a ball that was a little bit too low and walked him. That was the last thing I wanted to do, was walk him. He's not hitting the best right now so I wanted to at least make him put it in play. If he's swinging the bat well, then it's not a bad thing to do, to walk him. But right now, he's not the same Big Papi." Ortiz is hitting just .228 this season, but still with 14 homers and 41 RBIs, and an OPS of .744. Sipp's frustration was compounded when he gave up the go-ahead and game-winning home run on a splitter to Hanley Ramirez. "It was down but just not out [outside] like I wanted," Sipp said. "He put the swing that I want him to put on it but he caught it out front and had enough pop to get it over the wall. I think that's just how it goes. Sometimes they'll hit a good pitch. He's pretty good and caught a good pitch. Location wasn't bad, just down the middle." If Sipp watched Ortiz circle the bases, he could plainly see Ortiz pumping his fist around second base, adding more salt to the wound. "I felt like I was throwing the ball well," Sipp said. "I got ahead of both Big Papi and Hanley but I just couldn't put them away."

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