My devotion to David Ortiz is well-documented. He’s our franchise’s greatest hitter, mascot, leader, and legend. The things he’s done for Boston over the past nearly two decades, on and off the field, will go down as some of the greatest moments in Red Sox history. There is no doubting how much he loves his team, his fans, and his city…
…Which is why it’s so upsetting to see some wannabe author trying to besmirch his name. Not that it’s the first time someone’s tried this with Papi; people love to try and take down people who shine.
The author, Eddie Dominguez is a former member of Boston PD and worked for MLB since 1999. His book contains allegations against almost every MLB team, nearly two decades worth of cases on everything from the PEDs usage to alleged human trafficking. Most of the book is devoted to his claim that MLB has tried to prevent their own Department of Investigations from operating when it harms the interests of the league.
The case he reported to the DOI involved a friend of David Ortiz’s named Monga who placed a lot of bets on baseball, including betting against the Red Sox. An informant of Dominguez claimed to have witnessed Monga placing a bet on against the Red Sox in a 2005 Sox vs. Sox game, a game in which David Ortiz hit a first-inning home run. Dominguez reported Monga to the DOI because he was always “hanging around the clubhouse,” a tenuous straw-grasping expedition if I’ve ever heard one. MLB issued a statement saying that the gambling investigation that stemmed from Dominguez’s report ‘did not implicate any players.’ Dominguez was ‘asked to leave’ the DOI in 2014.
In his book, he writes “I had no proof that Ortiz was placing bets… or had ever done so…” and he admitted to WEEI‘s Kirk & Callahan that he has “no evidence” that Ortiz gave information to Monga. I doubt he’d find any, since David Ortiz is the most loyal player Boston has ever seen. We named a street, a bridge, and a gate at the airport after him. Papi stayed here and watched as players far worse and less deserving than him received more lucrative contracts than he ever would. He put the team on his back and carried them to not one, not two, but three World Series. David Ortiz is the reason we had a Game 5 in the 2004 ALCS after almost being swept by the Yankees. And his powerful speech after the Marathon Bombing was the catalyst for a season that healed our hearts. Don’t try to tell me that this man would sell out his bleeping city. Don’t you dare.
It’s disgustingly transparent that Dominguez is focusing on this part of his book because Ortiz’s name recognition will drive up his sales, and it sickens and infuriates me that someone tasked protecting baseball would drag a beloved former player’s name through the mud. Dominguez tried to save face with a weak, “I am not singling out the Red Sox… every team in baseball had similar or worse issues.” And yet he singled out David Ortiz while simultaneously admitting that he had absolutely no evidence that Ortiz did anything wrong. It’s a nonstory, and if Ortiz hadn’t commented himself on his personal Instagram, I never would have even wasted time talking about it.
Many celebrities have been in situations such as these. One of the most extreme cases, of course, was Aaron Hernandez and his gang life friends committing murders together. And just this summer, a “friend” of Hanley Ramirez tried to use his name to save himself from drug-trafficking charges. When you become rich and famous, it’s hard to know who your real friends are and hard to detach yourself from where you came from. For a lot of these players, it’s hard to leave your former life behind, especially when it tries to hitch its wagon to your star. But David Ortiz fully embraced his role with the Red Sox and made Boston his home, for better or for worse. Despite playing on the 2004 team, he’s not an idiot; he’s an intensely loyal guy, to his team and to his friends from his previous life, even if they’re sticking to him like scummy barnacles on the underside of a gleaming ship. Loyalty should be applauded, not condemned or twisted for someone else’s personal gain.
Congratulations to you, Eddie Dominguez. You’ve just become Red Sox Nation’s Public Enemy No. 1. Clearly, your years as MLB’s Red Sox security agent taught you nothing about this city. You don’t get to come for our Papi. We protect our own more fiercely than a lioness guards her cubs. David Ortiz has always had our backs, and we will forever have his.