BOSTON -- Francisco Cervelli probably shouldn't have clapped. Jarrod Saltalamacchia probably should have chosen his words more carefully.
Good thing we have David Ortiz to put it in perspective.
No, Ortiz said emphatically, he understood what Cervelli did, and certainly didn't think it was worth fighting about. No, Ortiz said just as emphatically, he had no problem with Saltalamacchia suggesting that Cervelli's emphatic celebration had something to do with his Latin American heritage.
"We are like that, for real," said Ortiz, who comes from the Dominican Republic (Cervelli is from Venezuela). "Sometimes we forget where we're playing. The kid [Saltalamacchia] is a great dude, so I don't think he means anything bad.
"He's telling the truth."
Saltalamacchia first told reporters that "it's just the Latin players" who react the way Cervelli did, clapping wildly as he crossed the plate after hitting a home run. Saltalamacchia later said he meant to say it was because Cervelli is a young player.
"Salty comes in every day and gives me a hug, and I'm Latin," Ortiz said. "He's a sweet dude."
Ortiz has been known to irritate pitchers by admiring his home runs, and he defended himself.
"When I go deep, I want to enjoy myself," he said. "People have different ways to celebrate."
But Ortiz, who was involved in an altercation with the Orioles earlier this year, and served a three-game suspension because of it, said he doesn't want or expect his team to fight with the Yankees.
"You're playing baseball, not wrestling," he said. "We got our butts kicked [Tuesday]. All I care about is going out there and whooping their butts. Hopefully people understand, we're not here to fight. I missed three games in Baltimore, when I should have been playing.
"This ain't no WWF. This is baseball."