Major League Baseball‘s 500-home run club got their newest member on Saturday when Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz blasted a 428-foot home run off Tampa Bay Rays‘ starting pitcher Matt Moore.
After running the bases in the fifth inning, the Red Sox dugout emptied to congratulate the 39-year-old and was quickly joined by the bullpen who ran in from the outfield.
After hitting home run No. 495 against the New York Yankees on August 30, Ortiz made quick work of his final five home runs to hit the key No. 500 this weekend. He hit five home runs in the last 11 games, hitting 33 this season and 500 all-time.
Ortiz’s resume continues to get better as his career starts to come to a close. With only a team option remaining on his contract with the Red Sox, Ortiz now has three World Series rings (2004, 2007, 2013), a World Series MVP Award (2013), a nine-time All-Star (2004–2008, 2010–2013), six-time Silver Slugger Award (2004–2007, 2011, 2013) and seven-time Edgar Martinez Award (2003–2007, 2010, 2013). His entrance to the Hall of Fame will only be tough due to the position he played, designated hitter. However, he has the stats to make the cut.
Ortiz becomes the 27th player to join the 500-home run club and the first since Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols hit the key number in 2014. In addition to Ortiz and Pujols, Yankees’ infielder Alex Rodriguez is the only other active member of the club with 685, 4th most all-time.
The Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic native began his career in 1992 with the Seattle Mariners where he played of one of their minor league affiliate’s the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers. In 1996 Ortiz was dealt to the Minnesota Twins for a player to be named later where he made his MLB debut on September 2, 1997. Following the 2002 season, the Twins released Ortiz. He signed a free agent deal with Boston in 2003 and the rest is history.
Although the Red Sox are having a not-so-great season, it is nice to see something positive come out of it. Congrats to David Ortiz, well deserved.