Northeastern University pitcher James Mulry pitches in the third inning striking out Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz at JetBlue Park during Red Sox Spring Training on Thursday, February 27, 2014.

TJO Sports’ James Mulry K’s David Ortiz & Dustin Pedroia in Spring Training Game

Sophomore James Mulry, Northeastern left handed pitcher, struck out both Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz during the annual Spring Training game on Thursday, February 27, 2014 in Ft. Myers against the Red Sox. In 3 innings, Mulry allowed 3 hits and 1 earned run while walking 2, along with his 2 strikeouts. The Red Sox beat Northeastern, 5-2.

James is on the TJO Sports roster, and the son of BPL Hall of Famer Jim Mulry (1998), who played shortstop for both Northeastern & Triple D’s.

Steve Buckley of the Boston Herald wrote a great piece for the Boston Herald on the performance.

James Mulry is as Boston as they come — raised in West Roxbury, a graduate of Boston Latin, and a sophomore pitcher on the Northeastern University baseball team.

And David Ortiz is the man who last April asserted his standing as a Bostonian when he famously said, “This is our (expletive) city. And nobody is going to dictate our freedom.”

During yesterday’s annual Red Sox-Northeastern exhibition game at JetBlue Park, these two sons of Boston — Mulry from the West Roxbury part of town, Ortiz from the Dominican Republic side — had themselves one dandy of a neighborhood turf war.

And it ended with Mulry dictating Big Papi’s freedom to remain at the plate.

Mulry already had the ballpark buzzing when he punched out Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia. And then the sophomore left-hander induced Ortiz to wave at a two-strike slider on the outside part of the plate.

“I was really just trying to have fun out there,” said Mulry, making what automatically becomes the house leader in this season’s Understatement of the Year contest.

“When Pedroia stepped in, I was really just trying to have a lot of fun,” he said, sticking to his story. “But with Ortiz in there, he just looks a lot bigger in the box . . . I guess you get a little nervous.”

Suffice to say Mulry has a story he will be telling during his golden years.

“How many years from now? Why that long?” said Ortiz, who acknowledged the crowd with a laugh after whiffing. “He could have a drink tonight and say, ‘I struck out Papi.’ ”

So, how did Mulry get Pedroia?

“Fastball away,” Mulry said.

Pedroia, it should be noted, was not having fun. He did not look amused as he walked back to the dugout.

When Mulry threw the two-strike slider to Ortiz, and then, when he saw the hero of last year’s World Series begin to move his bat, the thought instantly crossed his mind that, given where the pitch was headed, he might have another strikeout.

Swing and a miss, and mission accomplished.

“I turned away, I didn’t even look at him,” Mulry said. “I don’t know what he did. I heard everyone laughing as he was walking off, as he waved or something.”

His reason for not looking at either player after the strikeouts, he said: “Respect.”

Years from now, if he ever runs into Pedroia or Ortiz, will he mention the strikeouts?

“Probably not,” Mulry said. “I would never be able to do that.”

Respect.

But don’t think Mulry’s friends and relatives will ever let him forget it.

“My dad’s probably already told everyone what’s happened,” Mulry said of his father, Jim Mulry, the captain of the 1988 NU baseball team who was in the stands yesterday.

Text Quoted Above, Copyright © 2014 Boston Herald, all rights reserved. Written by Steve Buckley.

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