Forget the 52 homeruns. Forget the 133 RBI. Forget the clutch hits and walkoff blasts. There are more reasons why David Ortiz is our Most Valuable (and most beloved) Player. Whether or not he ever gets the national recognition and respect to garner the actual award, Boston fans have to realize how special Big Papi is.
Generosity: After breaking Foxx’s 68-year-old Red Sox record for most homers in a season, Ortiz presented hitting coach Papa Jack with the bat he used for numbers 50, 51 and 52.
Giving Something Back: With the help of his hitting coach and his batting-practice pitcher, David Ortiz used his day off Thursday to teach 150 kids about the fine art of hitting a baseball and having fun hitting it hard.
“We all are going to teach you how to hit the ball, hit for power and how to keep the smile on your face,” Ortiz told the group, while showing off his trademark ear-to-ear grin, adding later, “I love having fun with kids. I have three.”
Charity Work: Ortiz recovered the record-tying and both record breaking homerun balls from the fans who snared them. He is auctioning them off on the Red Sox website. Proceeds from the auction will go to the Boys and Girls Clubs of America and the Plaza de la Salud Hospital de Ninos in Ortiz’s home town of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
Being Big Papi: The game was delayed for a few moments during Ortiz’s at-bat in the first by a fire alarm. When it was announced over the PA system they were investigating an alarm in the stadium, Ortiz faked like he was running off, drawing laughter from many.
We won’t see the playoffs this year, so for the next week, let’s enjoy the game’s best player and best guy.