Former pro football and basketball players have been quick to jump into the new legal cannabis industry, but baseball players not so much... until now.
"Once I embraced the flow of the flower everything changed,” Ortiz stated. “Cannabis has helped me relax, sleep better, manage stress and heal physically after a lifetime of playing ball."
Ortiz retired in 2016 after 14 years with the Red Sox and winning four World Series (2004, 2007, 2013), He amassed 541 homeruns, 1,768 RBI and a .286 batting average in his 19-year career that started with the Minnesota Twins.
Sweet Sluggers is the first product to roll out of Papi Cannabis. They're blunts made with tea leaves and hemp paper rather than tobacco. The packaging is designed by Ortiz's daughter Alexandra. “I personally prefer pre-rolled blunts and these ones are special to me because I was able to work with Alexandra on the colorful artwork for the packaging,” he boasted.
Papi is partnering with Rev Brands in Massachusetts. Sweet Sluggers will be available starting July 29 at Bay State shops like Holyoke Cannabis. The blunts are filled witth the following sttrains: Black Mamba #7, Lava Cake #7, Motorbreath #15 and Bootylicious #4. Other products in the pipeline include hash-oil infused pre-rolled blunts, a vape cartridge, an edible using free-trade Dominican chocolate, a healing salve and a one-hitter made of hand-carved Guayacan wood.
"I'm not astranger to the power of cannabis," he notes at the website. "I work with my partners to carefully select flower that will produce the potency and effect that I have constatly strived to deliver."
Big Papi: "Once I embraced the flow of the flower everything changed.”
Ortiz began using cannabis "later in life": to deal with stress, anxiety and physical ailments. It's unclear if he smoked before or after games. Fans who missed Ortiz's displays of power hitting probably know him from his commentaries on Fox before and after games.
His broadcasting wotk and life in general were disrupted in 2019 when he was shot in the Dominican Republic, where he was born in 1975. Ortiz was released from the hospital two surgeries and 17 days after the incident.
While Dominican authorities pinned the shooting on a Mexican drug cartel, an indepenedent investigator hired by Ortiz concluded Dominican drug lord Cesar Peralta ordered the hit. Peralta was extradiced to the U.S.in 2021. It's alleged Ortiz was seeing a woman associated with Peralta.
“We were neighbors for four years," Peralta said in March. "I have never been with one of David’s women and David was never involved with any of mine."