At the age of 40, David Ortiz is in the midst of one of the best seasons of his illustrious career. He's already hit 18 home runs and has knocked in 63 RBIs while hitting a stellar .337. Durability and fatigue are always factors at his age, so Ortiz is trying to do everything he can to stay on the field.
That includes skipping the Home Run Derby.
On Wednesday, Ortiz shared the unfortunate truth that most had already expected to hear. He won't be in the contest next month in San Diego - - a competition he hasn't done since winning it in 2010.
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"No, because I have so many things going on over there when I go," Ortiz said, via WEEI. "It's going to be crazy. The Home Run Derby wears you out. I would like to, but I've got so many things lined up. It's too much."
Ortiz figures to get a big reception during All-Star Weekend for his farewell tour as it's (almost) certainly going to be his final All-Star Game. But more importantly, and the factor that is keeping him out of the derby, is that he doesn't have enough left in the tank to swing as hard as he can consistently.
"I probably would, but I'm not. My time is going to be very limited," he said. "It's good for the younger guys to do it. It puts you on the map for a minute. Energy is a big part of it. When was the last time you saw a guy my age do it. It takes everything out of you, because you don't take any cheap swings. Everything has to be powerful. You definitely have to be in your 20's to do it."
Seeing Ortiz win it at the age of 40 would be absolutely fantastic, but his longevity for the rest of the 2016 season is far more important than winning another Home Run Derby. If the Red Sox want to win a World Series in his final season to send him off in dramatic fashion, Ortiz will need to remain healthy and fresh.