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Boston Red Sox great reveals issues with pain killers, trying to convince David Ortiz to use cannabis

Jason Burgos
boston red sox, david ortiz
Credit: USA Today Network

Boston Red Sox great Jonathan Papelbon recently revealed his battle with pain killers during his playing days, and that he got resistance from new Hall-of-Famer David Ortiz to use cannabis. A product the baseball great is now oddly selling in his new business venture.

Papelbon is probably the best relief pitcher and closer in Red Sox history. During his seven years with the organization, he helped them to break the curse and win their first World Series in 86 years and earned All-Star honors four straight years in Boston. Not to mention he has by far the most saves in team history. However, success wasn’t easy and the rigors of a long season mentally and physically had an effect on him.

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In a Friday appearance on the “Bradfo Sho” podcast, the 41-year-old revealed being prescribed pain killers by team doctors, and how he would end up going through withdrawals in the offseason once he stopped using them. It was an issue he says never happened when he would eventually switched to cannabis products to deal with pain and stress relief.

“Early on in my career when the doctors really weren’t getting evaluated and looked at and checked upon — pain pills out the wazoo. No good, bro. I’ve been down that road. That is a horrible road to go down. I felt like every offseason I was in withdrawal when the season was over. This is a terrible thing. With cannabis, there is none of that.”

Jonathan papelbon on issues with pain pills

Boston Red Sox legend David Ortiz called Papelbon a ‘crazy white dude’ for suggesting cannabis pain relief

boston red sox, david ortiz
Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Papelbon eventually discovered that using cannabis products was a far more natural way to deal with in-season pain/stress, and it had none of the drawbacks of pain pills. It was a lesson he tried to impart to his then teammate, and new Hall-of-Famer, David Ortiz. However, the Red Sox icon wanted nothing to do with it back then.

“Back when I played, I tried to really explain to him the benefits of it. When you are under that much stress and under that much travel and you’re grinding your teeth away at night. I tried to get him to understand that when you can recover quicker, you’re gonna be better for the next day. I tried to always explain that to him. Early on in his career, all he would say is ‘You crazy a** white dude. You redneck crazy, man!”

papelbon on trying to get david ortiz to us marijuana

Ironically enough, while the legendary slugger had no interest in cannabis back then, in June he announced a venture into the fast-growing industry called “Papi Cannabis.” Where the Dominican baseball god is now peddling the kinds of products he had no curiosity in trying during his playing days.