Here’s what David Ortiz said about the Tampa Bay Rays’ method of winning

Red Sox

“Everybody is trying to do it the Tampa way.”

David Ortiz won many World Series titles, something the Tampa Bay Rays cannot say they’ve done. Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff Photo

David Ortiz won plenty of times with the Red Sox. He led Boston to a World Series victory in 2004 after an ALCS in which he initiated the first-ever 3-0 comeback in the history of baseball. He won two more World Series titles since then, including in 2013, when he batted .688 throughout that series. 

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The Red Sox look a lot different since Ortiz retired from the game, and they have since tried to find new ways to win. One of these ways is by trying to get as much bang for their buck as possible through relying on homegrown talent and short-term contracts, a strategy that has worked for the Tampa Bay Rays. Ortiz, however, has qualms with this method.

“Everybody is trying to do it the Tampa way,” Ortiz said Monday, per NBC Sports Boston’s John Tomase). “I really like the Tampa way, the way they function during the regular season or whatever, but it hasn’t worked for them during the playoffs.”

Despite their annual regular season success, the Rays have not maintained it in the playoffs. They have yet to win a World Series, and they’ve only made it once (2020) in the last 10 years. Outside of 2020, they haven’t even made it to the ALCS. Less successful teams have taken that opportunity away from them throughout the last decade, including the Red Sox.

“Every year [the Rays are] in the playoffs, every year they dominate the division,” Ortiz said. “It has been happening since way before I retired — but with no results. The [ultimate] result is winning it all. So even with the perfection that they’ve got going on, there’s still something missing.”

The Red Sox have been compared to the Rays extensively over the past few years, with some giving Boston the nickname “Tampa North.” They pride themselves on their farm system and rarely hand out massive contracts. They’ve received flak for attempting and failing to get their star players re-signed at a hometown discount. Even their head decision-maker, chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom, was hired after working for the Rays. 

But that doesn’t mean that a team that relies heavily on young talent can’t win. The Houston Astros have won two World Series in the last 10 years, largely on the backs on their once-dominant farm system. Ortiz agrees, and hopes that if Boston wants to head in that direction, they look to Houston as their model.

“A lot of teams have won with guys from the farm,” Ortiz said. “Look at the Houston Astros. That is an organization that I will copy, based on what they’re doing. Because they know how to figure it out during the regular season, and they know how to figure it out during the playoffs.”

Only two players—Rafael Devers and Chris Sale—remain from Boston’s 2018 World Series team. This is a brand new Red Sox team with brand new people in charge, and they look to win very soon. Ortiz hopes that when they do get back to winning, they do so the right way.

“I want to dominate during the regular season, yes, so I can be in the playoffs,” Ortiz said. “But I also want to dominate during the playoffs.”