George W. Bush is popping up in the most random places these days.
The latest quirky Bush news: the former president joined the Atlanta Braves in the locker room to celebrate outfielder Marcell Ozuna's 10 years as an MLB pro. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has the story.
Apparently, Ozuna received a $4,000 bottle of champagne signed by his teammates -- and Dubya himself.
The Braves' Kevin Pillar said he "started the rumor" that Bush would be at Global Life Field after hearing it from former Rangers pitcher Derek Holland.
Holland had told Pillar that Bush likes to meet with the visiting team when he's at Rangers games. “I was like a kid in a candy store when I found out," Pillar said.
To his delight, it turned out to be more than a rumor. Bush dropped by to hang out with the team and was "super charismatic," Pillar said.
“I think guys, regardless of your political affiliation, thought it was a really cool thing, and I think everyone was very impressed with his charisma, down-to-earthness,” Pillar said.
“If he invited us over to his house after this game, we all would’ve jumped at the opportunity to go,” Pillar added. “He told us some stories, he was super charismatic, shook everyone’s hand, joked with (Ozuna) about his 10 years. It was a cool experience.”
It was definitely an unforgettable day for Ozuna.
“That means a lot,” Ozuna said. "That means my teammates care about me. I care about them. We’re a unit. We are one group.”
While he ended his presidency as one of the most controversial and unpopular presidents ever, Bush had undeniable charisma, as Pillar put it. It shined when Bush threw the first pitch at the World Series just days after the 9/11 attacks.
He would later reflect that it was the most nerve-wracking moment of his presidency. But he kept his nerve in what proved to be a unifying moment of pure patriotism.
Since leaving office, Bush has continued to pop up in the news now and then, often in surprising ways. A few weeks ago, "Dubya" popped in on student visitors at the George W. Bush Presidential Museum in Dallas.