UPDATE, 6:20 p.m. ET: Ortiz says it wasn’t a stunt.
The selfie of David Ortiz and Obama yesterday was pretty cool. Now it feels somewhat less cool:
Ortiz, who took the presidential photo with his Samsung smartphone, had signed a promotional deal with the mobile-device manufacturer on Monday.
“We have a relationship with David and the Red Sox. We partner with people who have like-minded values and fit with who we are as a brand,” a Samsung spokesman told ABCNews.com in a statement.
Shortly after Ortiz tweeted his photo with Obama, which he took while the 2013 World Series champion Red Sox were being feted at the White House, Samsung told the Boston Globe that it “was an honor to help him capture such an incredible and genuine moment of joy and excitement.”
I don’t guess the concept of selfies are so dignified that they can actually be sullied by commercialism. But it was a lot more fun to think of this as a spontaneous thing as opposed to a marketing effort.
Clayton Kershaw had nothing left to prove when he exited the mound during his last Cactus League start on Friday. He finished camp with a 0.00 ERA, made all the more impressive after he extended his scoreless streak to 21 1/3 innings following 6 2/3 frames of one-hit ball against the Royals.
In six spring training starts this year, the Dodgers southpaw racked up 12 hits, four walks and 23 strikeouts. His velocity appeared to fluctuate between the high-80s and low-90s from start to start, but manager Dave Roberts told reporters that he expects Kershaw to get back up to the 93 m.p.h. range next week. Kershaw is tabbed for his eighth consecutive Opening Day start on Thursday.
The 30-year-old lefty is poised to enter his 11th season with the club in 2018. He went 18-4 in 27 starts last year and turned in a 2.31 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.4 SO/9 over 175 innings. He suffered his fair share of bumps and bruises along the way, including a lower back strain that required a five-week stay on the disabled list.
The Dodgers will open their season against the Giants on Thursday, March 29 at 7:08 PM ET. Given the sudden rash of injuries that hit the Giants’ rotation earlier today, Kershaw’s Opening Day opponent has not yet been announced.