A big month and hopefully, more in store
It was nice to hear on Wednesday that I got the American League’s Player of the Month Award for May. That’s good stuff, real good stuff. I’m just going to continue doing that and try to get a few more.
What’s really nice is that both the Player and Pitcher of the Month came from our team. Jon Lester did a great job, too. He was awesome. He’s been pitching his butt off. Like I said, we’re going to try to continue it, because it makes a huge difference, him pitching like that and me hitting the way I was. Of course, with the support of all our teammates and fans, it makes it even better.
The team and I were kind of in the same situation in April, both struggling. So this kind of tells me that when I get it going, good things happen.
The stats say that this past month I had the best combination of average and power I’ve had in a long time. The average thing isn’t a huge deal to me. Of course, everyone wants to hit for average, but in my case, it’s a little bit of craziness, because what I fight for my average is hitting the ball down in the hole like any left-handed power hitter. They have that shift on, and if you take the 10, 15 balls in the hole away from me, there’s not going to be average showing up.
I worry about my average, but I don’t really worry about it. I should be hitting .300 now, but it ain’t like that. I’m producing, getting some RBIs, hitting some homers, that’s part of my game, too, and that’s one thing I try to increase.
The month of May started well right away for me. I had two homers on May 1 in Baltimore. Like I always say, hits bring confidence. It doesn’t matter how hard you work or how great you feel. If you don’t get hits, you feel like you didn’t get it done. One good night gives you a chance to have another good night. Or maybe one good night gives you a chance to battle a bad night and come back with another good night, and that’s how it goes.
Last week was about a lot more than baseball for me. I had my Eat n’ Greet at Big Papi’s Grille on May 27, raising money for my foundation, which helps kids in need of critical care. As I’ve talked about a lot before in this space and other places, that cause means so much to me.
Then, the next day, it was something different altogether. I flew to New York to pay respects to my good friend Jose Lima, who died recently. Man, he was 37 years old. That really hit me hard.
He was a happy person. He brought a lot of happiness away from others when he died. When I saw him in that casket, I was like, ‘We ain’t nothing.’ That’s a man full of life and happiness and the next thing you know, 37-year-old, massive heart attack. That hit home.
I’m a huge believer in what God has for us. You have to live by that rule. If you try and change it, it’s not going to work. When I got back from that, it just made me think, “I’ve got to love life.” I see people complaining about stupid things. That’s why I try not to change my personality.
The day he died, it really hit me. We were in Philly that day. Ask the guys. I was destroyed that day. I couldn’t believe this. That’s my boy, man. That’s my dude. That’s my dog right there. When I found about that, you start thinking about all the things we did together, all the good times. I don’t remember being around him one day where he didn’t make me laugh. Not one day. That’s why I’m telling you when I saw him, I had a 20-minute highlight in my head. I saw his kids, his wife, his family, everything.
I knew him for more than 14 years. We played on the same winter ball team. RIP to my good friend Jose.
Just to let you know, I’ll be part of another event on June 12. I partnered with my good friends at the Four Seasons over on Boylston for the Run of Hope. They always support my efforts, so I had the David Ortiz Children’s Fund partner together with them on this fundraiser to help support a good cause. I will kick off the children’s 50-yard “Fun Run” at 10 a.m. There will be a 5K run at 10:30 and the 2K walk at 10:35. Everyone should try to get involved. It’s a great cause.