Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista tweeted earlier today he is dedicating tonight’s game against the Oakland Athletics to Derek Lendosky, a nine-year-old Fennimore boy who died earlier this week.
The hashtag #JoseBautistaGameForDerek gained momentum in the last 24 hours as supporters of the cause sent tweets to Bautista requesting him to dedicate a game in memory of Derek.
When the Lendosky family attended an interleague game between the Brewers and Blue Jays last June, Bautista threw Derek a ball.
“Bautista threw a ball right to Derek and he caught it,” Derek’s father, Steve recalls. “He was Derek’s favorite ballplayer.”
Toronto (53-61) hosts Oakland (64-49) at 6:07 this evening. Bautista is batting .260 this season with 25 home runs and 68 RBIs.
Steve plans to watch the game and cheer on Bautista, now one of his favorite players as well.