Report: David Ortiz was surprised to hear he had joined Boston’s Olympic bid

Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz served on Boston 2024’s board of directors.
Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz served on Boston 2024’s board of directors. –USA Today Sports

Olympic bidding organization Boston 2024 had a penchant for surprises during its short life. Several landowners in places Boston 2024 wanted to put venues, for example, said they had not been told their properties were in the group’s plans. And New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was unaware he had been listed as a Boston 2024 officer in a state filing in the group’s early days.

Here’s one more from beyond the grave. David Ortiz was named to Boston 2024’s board of directors three months after Boston had been named the United States bidding city. He apparently had no idea he had earned the honor. He didn’t even seem to know Boston was bidding for the games.

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That’s according to a nugget in a Red Sox notes article from The Boston Globe’s Peter Abraham, published Friday:

Back in April, the committee to bring the Olympics to Boston in 2024 announced with great fanfare that Ortiz had volunteered to join their board of directors.

The Red Sox were in Baltimore at the time and I went over to Ortiz to ask him about the news.

“What are you talking about?’’ he said. “They want the Olympics in Boston?’’

Ortiz was put on the committee but somebody forgot to tell him, either his agents or the Boston 2024 people.

A Boston 2024 spokesperson told Boston.com that it was the latter: Ortiz’s agent accepted the invitation on his behalf, and it did not make it to the slugger immediately. As Abraham notes, Ortiz eventually got the message, filming a digital marketing video for Boston 2024 and offering his support for the Olympic bid. Other athletes included on the board included Michelle Kwan, Larry Bird, and Jo Jo White.

Boston’s Olympic bid collapsed in late July amid public opposition and cost concerns, ending a run that had seen its share of missteps. Los Angeles has replaced Boston as the 2024 U.S. bid city.

Major players in Boston’s Olympic bid:

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