David Ortiz is one of the best players to have on your side in clutch situations, but he’s a nightmare for just about everyone else.
The Boston Red Sox slugger came up in a big spot again Sunday, drilling a go-ahead, three-run homer in the sixth inning to help lift his team to an 11-8 win over the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.
Ortiz’s homer conjured up some old memories, as he hit it off Blue Jays reliever Joaquin Benoit, who gave up the slugger’s iconic grand slam in Game 2 of the 2013 ALCS as a member of the Detroit Tigers.
Those memories were positive for Boston fans, but not for president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski, who was with the Tigers when Ortiz and the 2013 Red Sox knocked his club out of the playoffs.
Almost three full years later, Dombrowski clearly hasn’t forgotten Big Papi’s big blast, and he let his slugger know after Sunday’s game.
As painful a reminder as Ortiz’s homer was, it must be nice for Dombrowski knowing that one of the greatest clutch hitters of all time is on his side as the team gears up for a playoff run.
As for Ortiz, who now has 32 homers and 110 RBI on the season and passed Jimmie Foxx on Major League Baseball’s all-time homer list, he admitted his 2013 shot off Benoit was on his mind when he stepped into the box.
“A little bit, yeah,” Ortiz said, via the Boston Herald’s Jason Mastrodonato. “And I thought I was getting a different menu, but he threw me a hittable — I mean, it wasn’t that bad. It was in the bottom of the strike zone, right where the pitcher wanted to make that pitch. I guess I put a good swing on it.”
And this time, Dombrowski is happy Ortiz did.