Name: David Américo Ortiz Arias “David Ortiz”
Born: November 18, 1975
Occupation: Baseball Player
David Américo Ortiz Arias anglicized his name to simply David Ortiz when he joined the Minnesota Twins in 1997. Ortiz, who was born in the Dominican Republic, originally was signed by the Seattle Mariners in 1992 as David Arias. He spent the following four years in the minor leagues before being traded to the Twins.
Ortiz grew up in the Dominican Republic and became a United States citizen in 2008, taking his oath of citizenship at the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston. As a young man, he was very close to his mother and honors her every time he crosses home plate. He points to the sky with both index fingers as a tribute to her. She died in a car accident in 2002. Ortiz also has a tattoo of his mother on his biceps.
Ortiz, nicknamed “Big Papi”, played five years for the Minnesota Twins, playing at first base and as a designated hitter, but his career there was injury prone and he was released after the 2002 season. Beginning with the 2003, he signed on with the Boston Red Sox as a free agent.He initially entered the lineup as a pinch hitter, but eventually became the team’s go-to designate hitter.
During the 2014 season, Ortiz hit his 400th career homerun as a member of the Red Sox organization and some critics claim he is perhaps the second best hitter in team history, after Ted Williams. In 2014, he signed a $16 million contract with Red Sox that keeps him on the roster through the 2015 season and gives the team an option to extend the contract for two additional years.
In the early days of the 2015 season, Ortiz was expected to be one of the fundamental forces behind the Red Sox offense. Ortiz is one of the more than 100 baseball players named in a 2003 New York Times article about performance enhancing drug use. Prior to the allegation, Ortiz had suggested players testing positive for steroid use should serve a minimum one-year suspension from the game. He continues to deny using steroids, but said his use of supplements may have led to false positive test. The records were sealed and Ortiz was never allowed to know what his test results suggested he had taken.
Ortiz is married with three children and his primary charitable work has been focused on children. Ortiz founded the David Ortiz Children’s Fund in 2007 to focus on helping children in need. In 2007, he released a wine called Vintage Papi with the proceeds going directly to the charity fund.
Ortiz has an estimated net worth of about $45 million from lucrative contracts and endorsement deals.
How much is $45 million?
After marrying a Wisconsin native, Oriz has become a fan of the Green Bay Packers. With $45 million, could help the team out by paying quarterback Aaron Rodgers salary for two years.