Former Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine, in an interview on NBC Sports Network that aired on Tuesday night, claimed that DH David Ortiz decided to bail on the 2012 season after his return from a right Achilles injury because he didn't want to play for a team that was out of contention. Ortiz went on the DL on July 16 after suffering the injury while running the bases on an Adrian Gonzalez homer.
"David Ortiz came back after spending about six weeks on the disabled list and we thought it was only going to be a week. He got two hits the first two times up, drove in a couple runs; we were off to the races," Valentine said on "Costas Tonight," in a transcript that appears on NBCSports.com . "Then he realized that this trade meant that we’re not going to run this race and we’re not even going to finish the race properly and he decided not to play anymore. I think at that time it was all downhill from there."
Ortiz, who was initially expected to be out for just a few days, instead was sidelined for five weeks before returning on Aug. 24 -- the day on which the Red Sox agreed with the Dodgers on the parameters of the roster-reshaping blockbuster that sent Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford and Nick Punto to Los Angeles. Ortiz went 2-for-4 against the Royals with a double in that game, but then suffered a recurrence of the injury while running to second and landed back on the disabled list.
The 36-year-old received a plasma-rich platelet (PRP) injection in early September in hopes of returning to games before the end of the seaosn, but ultimately, his injury did not progress to the point where he returned to the field in 2012. He finished the year with a .318 average, a .415 OBP, a .611 slugging mark and 23 homers in 90 games.