Toronto fell to Josh Reddick and the A’s 14-6 on Friday night, but Jose Bautista can chalk up a win for his gesture in the contest.
Last Sunday, 9-year-old Derek Lendosky of Fennimore, Wis., a huge Blue Jays and Bautista fan, died in a tragic utility task vehicle accident.
On Wednesday, his father Steve Lendosky reached out to the Toronto slugger on Twitter about the death of his son.
Lendosky informed Bautista that his son would be buried in a Bautista jersey along with a ball that the All-Star had given him. Lendosky didn’t ask the outfielder for anything, but Bautista was moved enough by the tweet that he decided to dedicate Friday night’s game against Oakland to Derek.
“I got a lot of similar requests and I can’t get to all of them. But I did some follow up on this one, and when someone tells you they will bury their son in your jersey, it’s tough,” Bautista told The Toronto Star.
Behind Reddick’s three home runs, the A’s stormed out to a 14-3 lead, but in the 8th inning, Bautista came to the plate in his fourth at-bat of the game, and with all of Fennimore watching, he belted a monstrous home run to left field for his 26th blast of the season. Bautista ended the night going 3-for-5.
The four-time All Star delivered on his promise, and Derek’s father reached out to Bautista after the game thanking him and saying that he made an entire community smile that night.
Check out the exchange between Bautista and Derek’s father in the tweets below.
@JoeyBats19 he would be on cloud 9. I am sure he is looking down on us smiling. You are too kind. What a wonderful gesture. Thank you.—
Steve Lendosky (@iamlongball) August 09, 2013
You are a true class act @JoeyBats19 . You now have lifelong fans. We appreciate your kind gesture. Thank you so much.—
Steve Lendosky (@iamlongball) August 10, 2013