SBD/November 10, 2016/Marketing Symposium

David Ortiz Plans To Stay Active In Retirement, Continuing To Serve As Product Endorser

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Ortiz (l) talked about developing his line of Big Papi chips, salsas and hummus
Retired Red Sox DH David Ortiz made it clear early on yesterday that even though he had great stats in his final year with the team, he has had no second thoughts about retiring. “Absolutely not,” he said. “I’m thinking about the beach and a pina colada.” Ortiz sat for an interview on day one of the ’16 Momentum Sports Marketing Symposium, accompanied by his agent, Alex Radetsky. Ortiz talked about his plans for retirement, including continuing his role as a prominent spokesperson for a variety of companies, as well as developing his line of Big Papi chips, salsas and hummus and creating a program to help young baseball players in his home country, the Dominican Republic. “I’m a big fan of making sure that the game gets better,” he said. “I feel like this is the best stage ever that the game has been on. This is a game that every day is a challenge. You want to make sure that a player that is developing now is ready when he gets to the States. You want to make sure they understand that just because you got signed by a ball club doesn’t mean that you made it.” Ortiz said that while he has no complaints about the way his career ended up, even he would have benefitted from having more guidance earlier in his career. “Better things would have happened to me earlier,” he said. Ortiz said he expects to have his academy operating within two years.

LIKE A BOSS: When it came to getting in and out of the Symposium ballroom, Ortiz demonstrated some skills that have made him so beloved and accomplished at the same time. In the 200-foot trip from the stage to the speaker room, he never stopped moving with a purpose, but was willing to pause after almost every step to take a quick selfie with a fan. A quick arm around a shoulder, smile, click and move another step. It was easy to tell he has done that one or two times before. “People want to connect off the field,” he said. “I take that very personally.”

Quick Hits:
* On helping younger players: “I always give players advice. You have to be careful how you behave off the field.”
* On expectations for his kids: “People always expect them to be like me, or even better.”
* On launching his own food line: “When I first started playing in New England, I did a couple of cooking shows because I love eating and I love homemade food. When they heard about it, a couple of companies approached me about doing this.”
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