Though no words or angry glances were exchanged on the field, Tampa Bay Rays left-hander David Price was none too pleased with Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz after he launched his eight inning home run on Saturday. The home run — Ortiz's second of the game — was a no doubter to right field that capped the scoring in Boston's 7-4 victory. It also ended Price's rough night on the bump — a postseason worst seven earned runs allowed in seven plus innings. Those facts alone are enough to annoy a competitor like Price, but it was Ortiz's hesitation to begin his home run trot that the 2012 Cy Young winner says truly irked him.
"He knows how I've pitched him for the last probably year-and-a-half, two years," Price said. "So he steps in the bucket and hits a homer. And he stares at it to see if it's fair or foul, I'm sure that's what he would say, but as soon as he hit it and I saw it I knew it was fair. Run."
Both Price and Ortiz had a better look than those watching at home, but it certainly didn't appear as cut-and-dry as Price made it sound. That said, Ortiz did stand there a couple extra seconds. A few courtesy steps up the line wouldn't have hurt, and he probably would have had a better view, too.
Still, it didn't seem like an egregious enough offense to warrant a reaction from the usually mild-mannered Price. That would lead one to believe it's fueled more by frustration and disappointment than anything.
"I don't know what my stat line is, but I know I gave up quite a few earned runs," he said. "It stings especially in a time in the postseason whenever you want to go out there and pitch your best. You're as good as your last game and tonight I wasn't very good."
Speaking of last games, here's another thing that's probably weighing on Price's mind: This could prove to be his final start in a Rays uniform.
Though there's no guarantee the Rays would go through with a trade, the prevailing opinion is they will at least explore one. As we all know, anytime an ace pitcher like Price is dangled, fish are going to bite. Of course, no one should count the Rays out yet, either, despite their 0-2 hole. But if they can't make it back to Boston next Thursday and Price ends up moving on, it would be a sour note to end their six-year relationship on.
It's a lot to think about for anybody, so it's understandable that Price was a little more irritable than usual.
OK, maybe he was a lot more irritable than usual.
Dirk Hayhurst...COULDNT hack it...Tom Verducci wasn't even a water boy in high school...but yet they can still bash a player...SAVE IT NERDS
— David Price (@DAVIDprice14) October 6, 2013
Price posted this tweet after the TBS studio crew expressed disappointment in his postgame comments. Obviously by that point he'd had some time to settle down, but it appears his mood hadn't improved all that much. The social media jabs aren't a real good look for Price, but a bad day is a bad day.
It's also a good reminder for Boston they should aim to end the series ASAP. If a fired up Price gets one more chance at them, they may end up staring into the night for an entirely difference reason.