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September 8, 2013

How great is David Ortiz? Cabrera, Baines weigh in

(Continued)

“I think any ballplayer wants to hit both right-handers and left-handers and he does a very good job with both,” Baines said.

“He only has to do half the job. Not play defense. He can do a little more studying than most guys can do.”

Penalized by writers

After leaving Martinez off his Hall of Fame ballot in 2011, Boston Globe baseball writer Peter Abraham wrote: “Edgar Martinez will go down as one of the best designated hitters in history. But if he spent his career at third base or first base, he’s a borderline Hall of Famer. Being a career DH means you’re a lousy fielder, not worthy of extra consideration.”

Should borderline DHs be penalized because they don’t play the field?

“It’s part of baseball,” Baines said about the DH. “Why not reward them for it? If there wasn’t a DH, then that’s different. ... It is (part of the game).”

Cabrera thinks it’s challenging because the DH has to sit so much.

“I don’t know how the DHs do it,” Cabrera said.

“They sit for a couple innings and then go back and hit. To me, that’s amazing.”

Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia feels the same way. He said he is a better hitter when he’s completely involved in the game.

Cabrera said about DHs not winning MVP awards or being inducted into Cooperstown: “It’s unfair. I remember the year he (Ortiz) had when he had like 150 RBI and like 40-something home runs.

He should be the MVP and all this stuff but they didn’t give it to him because he’s a DH. That’s not fair. Sometimes you’ve got to give it to players like that because when you pull those kind of numbers as a DH — to do that, that’s amazing.”

Follow Christopher Smith on Twitter @SmittyOnMLB

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