The Boston Red Sox designated hitter is enjoying an incredible final season, and he put that into great context Wednesday in his very first at-bat. Facing Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Matt Andriese in the first inning, Ortiz blasted a two-run shot to right field to put Boston on the board.
The milestone tater, which extended his hitting streak to 11 games, gave Big Papi exactly 30 home runs and 100 RBIs on the season. That’s significant for several reasons: For starters, the 40-year-old now is the oldest player in Major League Baseball history to reach 30 homers in a season.
He also now has reached the 30-homer, 100-RBI plateau 10 times in his 20-year career, passing Ted Williams for the most such seasons in Red Sox history. In fact, Ortiz is one of just five players ever to record 10-plus 30/100 seasons with the same team, joining Babe Ruth, Albert Pujols, Hank Aaron and Lou Gehrig.
Ortiz has hit at least 30 homers and 100 RBIs in each of his last four seasons dating to 2013, which, you guessed it, is another record.
Big Papi’s blast also was his 533rd career homer, which is one behind former Red Sox Jimmie Foxx for 18th on baseball’s all-time list.
Of course, all of these records and milestones tell us something you already knew: Ortiz is one of the best hitters of all time, and at 40 years old, he’s still got it.
Thumbnail photo via Raj Mehta/USA TODAY Sports Images
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