David Ortiz delivered on his promise to hit a home run for a 5-year-old Red Sox fan who reportedly was born with a rare heart condition.
The whole scenario played out on Twitter.
In the eighth inning last night, Big Papi blasted a dramatic two-run homer off of New York Yankees usual lights-out reliever Dellin Betances, thereby lifting the Boston Red Sox to a come-from-behind 4-2 win over their arch-rival at Fenway Park. Center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. had tied the game in the seventh with a two-run clutch double.
With the win, the Red Sox (who finished last in the past two seasons after the winning the World Series in 2013) have climbed to second place in the American League East, just a game and a half behind the Baltimore Orioles. Ortiz, 40, the Red Sox superstar designated hitter, is retiring after the 2016 MLB season.
Going into tonight’s action, Ortiz has 507 career home runs, more than 2,000 hits, and about 1,600 RBI, culminating in a lifetime.284 batting average. As the first month of then2016 season comes to a close, he has already recorded 23 hits, including 11 doubles, and four home runs, with a total RBI count of 18.
Alongside wingman and former Red Sox teammate Kevin Millar (who informed him about the youngster), David Ortiz told Maverick Schutte on social media to stay positive and promised him that he would go yard in the Yankees game.
“I’m going to hit a home run for you tonight, remember that. For you!’
“Maverick is a five-year-old Red Sox fan from Wyoming, who was born with a serious congenital heart defect called tetralogy of fallot. Since birth, he has undergone more than 30 surgeries and will likely need to undergo many more, according to the Colorado Children’s Hospital Foundation…Earlier this year, Maverick shared that enthusiasm with Kevin Millar and Josh Beckett, trading videos with the two former Red Sox players. In a video in February, Millar told Maverick that when he saw Ortiz during spring training, he would tell the Red Sox slugger all about his young fan out west,” Boston.com explained.
In a video response to the DH’s big hit shared on Twitter by current MLB Network analyst Millar, Maverick said “Big Papi, you never let me down, and you are the best player ever in the Red Sox game. And I’m trying the hardest to get out there at Fenway Park and meet you…great homer; we saw it.”
If you watched the game last night, you saw Big Papi even hugging Millar’s kids, who were sitting near the Sox dugout, after he rounded the bases.
Baseball is so random and difficult under the best of circumstances, but living up to the home run promise to Maverick was a particularly tall order for Big Papi/David Ortiz last night, Yahoo! Sports detailed.
“It’s pretty cool to think that Ortiz’s big swing proved to be the biggest moment of the game. Not to mention it came against arguably the most dominant reliever in the game today in Betances. We’re talking about a pitcher who struck out 22 of the first 35 batters he faced this season, and a pitcher who has only allowed 13 home runs now in 193 career innings. Betances is a difficult guy to make contact against, let alone make the type of contact Ortiz did on Friday night. But the moment happened, and young Maverick could not have been more thrilled.”
[Photo by Elise Amendola/AP]