I’ve been busy over the last few days and focused more on this work than baseball…but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been watching.
This past week, Papi hit homeruns 50,51 & 52! He now holds the Boston Red Sox single season record for homruns, jumping over Jimmie Foxx’s record by (so far) two.
When Ortiz hit number 50, it was in a game that the Red Sox lost. No matter, Fenway Park erupted as if the team just won the World Series again. His teammates waited for him atop the dugout stairs and there were hugs and slaps all around. Terry Francona put it best when he said "As good a hitter as David is, he’s a better person".
It’s because of that, I believe, that the fans who caught his 51st and 52nd homeruns didn’t ‘ask’ for anything in return. They just turned over the balls. (At the very least, what they got in return was to meet Big Papi!)
And what about that ball? Homerun number 50? Well, that is up for auction right now at redsox.com. As of this writing, the bidding is up to $29,750.00. All the proceeds are going to be split between the Boys and Girls Club of America and Plaza de la Salud Hospital de NiÃ±os in Santa Domingo.
So you will all have to pardon me if I think not only is Papi MVP this year of the AL, but of MLB as well. 🙂
With all the talk of Manny ‘being Manny" and the Boston writers looking to get their digs in on the team this last week of baseball, Papi rises above it all. He’s a good person, with a good heart, who makes the people around him better as well (there is a story circulating that there was a meeting with his teammates where they discussed ways to do more charitable work).
David Ortiz is an inspiration. We need more people like him in baseball. And in life.
Five games left at Fenway Park this season. I’ll be at four of them. I’ll be there on Wednesday when they ‘officially’ honor Johnny Pesky and "Pesky’s Pole". And I’ll be there for all three games over the weekend against the Baltimore Orioles (that’s a twofer for me – I get to be in Fenway and cheer on my team for the last days of the season and I, hopefully, get to see Kevin Millar playing!).
There have been so many emails to me asking me why I haven’t written about how the Red Sox tanked in August and blew their playoff chances. Mostly from NON Red Sox fans, but a few from Sox fans as well. My answer is, if you’re reading my blog and have to ask that…well, then you haven’t really been reading my blog. They struggled and are going home early. Doesn’t mean they aren’t still my team and certainly doesn’t mean I’m going to kick them when they’re down.
Have a great day, folks!
(Picture of Papi, taken by me on Labor Day 2006)