BOSTON — Career-defining milestones have become a daily occurrence for David Ortiz.
The Red Sox’s designated hitter, if you’ll recall, passed Jimmie Foxx on Major League Baseball’s all-time list with a clutch home run Sunday against the Toronto Blue Jays.
On Monday, Ortiz continued his historic climb. In the sixth inning of Boston’s contest against the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway Park, the 40-year-old slugger deposited a 1-0 offering from pitcher Oliver Drake deep into the right field bleachers.
The blast was Ortiz’s 33rd of the season and 536th of his career, tying him with New York Yankees legend Mickey Mantle for 17th on Major League Baseball’s all-time home runs list. The Fenway Faithful knew it, too, chanting Big Papi’s name until he emerged from the dugout to take a curtain call in Boston’s eventual 12-2 win.
It turns out Sept. 12 is a pretty special day for Ortiz, as he hit his 499th and 500th career homers exactly one year ago against the Tampa Bay Rays on Sept. 12, 2015.
At that point, few thought Ortiz would climb significantly higher on the all-time homer list, but the slugger has been tearing the cover off the ball in his final big-league season.
Unless he catches fire even more, however, 17th place likely is where he’ll remain; he needs 12 homers in his final 19 games to tie Mike Schmidt for 16th place. We’re not putting anything past him at this point, though.
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images