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David Ortiz slams Donald Trump over Latino comments: ‘We deserve respect’

David Ortiz waved to the crowd as he entered the dugout before the start of the game against the Oakland Athletics at Oakland Coliseum.
David Ortiz waved to the crowd as he entered the dugout before the start of the game against the Oakland Athletics at Oakland Coliseum.Neville E. Guard/USA TODAY Sports

David Ortiz doesn’t typically comment on issues outside the realm of baseball, but when he does, it’s memorable.

So it was in Big Papi fashion that the retiring slugger shared his thoughts on Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump in a Spanish-language interview with USA Today sports.

“When you speak like that about us, it’s a slap in the face,” Ortiz said of Donald Trump’s comments during the election cycle. “I walk around sometimes, and I see Mexican people trying to earn a living in an honest way. And to hear somebody make those kinds of comments, it hits you. I think as Latin people we deserve better. Things have gotten much better in that regard. … As Latin people we deserve respect, no matter where you’re from. And especially our Mexican brothers, who come here willing to do all the dirty work.”

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Ortiz, who was born and raised in the Dominican Republic before he was signed by the Seattle Mariners in 1992, noted that he doesn’t usually make public remarks about politics. He said Trump’s comments “didn’t sit well” with him and called immigrants from Latin America “the spark plug of the country’s economy.”

Trump began his presidential campaign last May by describing undocumented immigrants as “rapists” that bring drugs and crime into the United States.


Christina Prignano can be reached at christina.prignano@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @cprignano.