Red Sox video takes fans from marathon to title
Tired of watching the Boston Red Sox fumble away their chances early in the World Series, David Ortiz called his teammates together in the visitor's dugout at Busch Stadium and, for the second time in the season, delivered the words everyone needed to hear.
''We don't get here every day. Let's relax and play the game the way we know how,'' the Red Sox designated hitter, who would go on to be named World Series MVP, says in audio featured on the team's 2013 championship DVD. ''We're better than this right here. Let's loosen up and play the game the way we do.''
The audio of Ortiz's inspirational words to his teammates was the highlight of the World Series highlight video unveiled on Monday night in a red carpet premiere in Boston's theater district. Catcher David Ross and third baseman Will Middlebrooks attended the showing along with team owner John Henry, president Larry Lucchino and general manager Ben Cherington.
''I have not watched hardly any highlights, so I am really, really excited about tonight,'' said Ross, who was still sporting his long, gray-streaked beard and still waiting for the magnitude of the team's title to sink in. ''I know the ending, so the stress level is going to be lower.''
One month after clinching their third title in 10 years, the Red Sox completed the cinematic trilogy with the release of their official highlight video. Narrated by actor Ben Affleck, the 90-minute recap of the regular season starts on Patriots Day, when two bombs exploded at the Boston Marathon finish line as the Red Sox were on their way to Cleveland, and goes through the six-game victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series.
''This is where things change, finish everything off and now we get ready for next year,'' Middlebrooks said.
The Red Sox were coming off a last-place finish, but they won 97 games to win the AL East in 2013 and then eliminated the Tampa Bay Rays and Detroit Tigers earlier in the playoffs. But they committed five errors in the first three games to fall behind the Cardinals two games to one, and another error helped spot St. Louis to a one-run lead in Game 4.
Ortiz led off the fifth inning with a double, made his way to third base, and scored on a sacrifice fly to tie it.
Then, he gathered everyone around and told them to snap out of it.
''I felt like I've got to say something to my teammates. As a veteran, I pretty much pulled everybody to the side and told them, `Hey, look. Let's just go back to the basics and not try to overdo things,'' Ortiz, who batted .688 against St. Louis and was awarded the World Series MVP, said in the accompanying commentary. ''The guys got the message. It was the one kind of speech that, sometimes you need it.''
Outfielder Jonny Gomes described it as ''24 kindergartners looking up at their teacher.''
''Big Papi nailed it,'' Gomes said in the video. ''He nailed the timing; he nailed the speech. We're just getting a kick in the butt when we needed it.''
The video also has behind-the-scenes of celebrations in clubhouse and bonus features, including President Barack Obama's congratulatory call to manager John Farrell and a music video called ''This Beard Came Here to Party.''
''It provides a lot of people a lot of pride and satisfaction,'' Lucchino told reporters before the premiere. ''This night is a good night to reflect back. So I intend to do that without guilt.''