On Wednesday afternoon in Oakland, Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz hit career home run number 400, making him the 49th player in MLB history to reach this milestone. It was also his 342nd home run in a Boston uniform, which ranks him fifth all-time in team history behind Ted Williams (521), Carl Yastrzemski (452), Jim Rice (382), and Dwight Evans (379). “Big Papi” also ranks second behind Manny Ramirez in number of at-bats per home run at 14.7, just ahead of Jimmie Foxx and Williams.
Known early in his Red Sox career for the dramatic, Ortiz has hit 10 walk-off home runs; all but one have come with the Red Sox, though the latest on 26 August 2009 against Chicago White Sox reliever Tony Pena (no relation to former catcher Tony Pena or his son, Tony). Three of those came in 2006, which was the same season that he set the single-season franchise record for home runs with 54. In total at Fenway Park, he has left the yard 164 times, all but one time with the Red Sox.
Most of his home runs have come as a DH; 46 have come with him playing first base. Two home runs have come as a pinch-hitter; his only one with Boston happened 29 May 2011 against Tigers reliever Jose Valverde.
In total, his home runs have plated 627 runners; about one-third of his home runs have come with runners on base. Ortiz has 11 grand slams in his career, all but one with Boston; his latest came 20 June 2012 off Miami Marlins pitcher Chris Hatcher. 42 of his home runs have come with two runners on base; 110 have been hit with one runner on base.
The pitcher who has surrendered the most home runs to Big Papi is current Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay, who has given up six; all came while Halladay was with the Toronto Blue Jays. Current Toronto pitcher Jamie Moyer is second with five; seven other pitchers have allowed four. In his career, the left-handed Ortiz has shown more success against right-handed pitchers, with only 89 home runs coming off southpaws.
Of the 58 Ortiz hit with the Minnesota Twins, with whom he played between 1997 and 2002, four were against Boston pitchers. The last came against former teammate Pedro Martinez, who served up an offering to Big Papi on 16 August 2002. Ortiz also hit one against the Red Sox off Pedro’s brother Ramon Martinez on 07 September 2000, which proved to be the one grand slam he would hit with the Twins.
Not surprisingly, most of his home runs have come against American League East Division opponents; Toronto has been victimized 46 times. Outside Boston’s division, the Texas Rangers lead opponents with 27 home runs surrendered to Ortiz. The National League franchise with the highest total is the Miami Marlins, who have allowed eight.