While he is no stranger to controversy, Red Sox slugger David Ortiz has never been one to talk politics. But with less than a month of regular season baseball left in his career, when he was asked about Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and his comments on Mexican immigration, he made his views clear.
"When you speak like that about [Latinos]," it's a slap in the face," Big Papi said in a Spanish-language interview with USA Today. "I see Mexican people trying to earn a living in an honest way. And to hear somebody make those kinds of comments, it hits you. I think as Latin people, we deserve better."
According to USA Today, Ortiz noted that even though he does not follow politics particularly closely, Trump's claims early in his campaign that Mexico was "sending" rapists and criminals north of the border "didn't sit well" with him.
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"As Latin people, we deserve respect, no matter where you're from. And especially our Mexican brothers, who come here willing to do all the dirty work," Ortiz said. "Latin people here in the United States are the spark plug of the country's economy. Whoever opposes that is going to lose. And not just Latin people but [all] immigrants."
Ortiz, a native of the Dominican Republic, became a naturalized citizen of the U.S. back in 2008 after helping lead the Red Sox to World Series titles in 2004 and 2007. He went on to be named World Series MVP after their Cinderella season ended in victory in 2013.
In parts of 20 seasons, the last 14 of which he has spent in Boston, Ortiz has slugged his way to 534 home runs 628 doubles and 1,748 RBI, batting a career .286/.380/.551/.931. As of Tuesday, in his final season, Ortiz leads baseball with 44 doubles, a .625 slugging average and a 1.030 OPS.