The Red Sox season has come to an end, after being swept in the division series by the Indians. A tough blow after such a grind of a season, and winning the AL East. That was all overshadowed however, with what being eliminated really meant for the city of Boston. The final out of last night’s game marked the official end to David Ortiz’s brilliant career, and an end of one of the greatest eras in Boston sports history.
Even as Cleveland celebrated their series win, the chants of “we want Papi” began to fill Fenway Park. Loudly the fans cheered, wanting one last curtain call from their hero and breaker of the curse. David Ortiz slowly emerged from the club house, tearful, hands up high while tipping his hat to the Fenway crowd. He walked towards the mound, then stopped in the center of it, raising his hands up in salute to the faithful. The crowd erupted with applause, knowing this would be Ortiz’s last salute to the fans, as a member of the Red Sox.
Let us now focus on the greatness that is David Ortiz, rather then the sorrow of his departure. Just look at his career numbers and accolades.
6x Silver Slugger
7x Edgar Martinez Award winner
2005 Hank Aaron Award
2011 Roberto Clemente Award
Home Runs 541
David Ortiz came to Boston as an unknown player, a guy who in 6 years with the Twins had only 58 home runs and 238 RBIs. He was the guy who just had a good year in Minnesota but was still released by the team at seasons end. A player who needed some help from a friend, Pedro Martinez, to get another chance to show what he’s capable of. Ortiz went on to do just that for Sox Nation in 2003, putting up his first of 10 career 30-100 seasons.
David “Big Papi” Ortiz’s legacy all started with the the amazing comeback against the Yankees in 04′. What he did that series showed how great of a player he was going to be. He lead the team back from an impossible 0-3 deficit, he beat the evil empire known as the Yankees single handedly, and most importantly because of this greatness, the 86 year curse had finally been broken. Ortiz would go on to continue adding to his post-season resume, with both titles and numbers.
3x World Series Champion
3x AL East Champion
2004 ALCS MVP
2013 Babe Ruth Award winner
2013 World Series MVP
Now, I could talk for days about his stats. Like how Ortiz is the new record holder for most home runs and runs batted in, in a final season, with 38 and 127 respectively. Both more then luckly unbreakable given most final seasons are when one is old. But because of how many more there are to choose from, I’m just going to put my top 10 David Ortiz moments
10. 1st home run with Red Sox Apr. 27th 2003. 14th inning game winner.
9. Final Regular season home game.
8. Delivers promise to hit home run for Maverick.
7. Breaks Jimmy Foxx’s single season home run record.
6. This is our F***ing city speech
5. 500th home run at Tropicana Field
4. Walk-off, 600th double, 3rd member of 500-600 club
3. 2013 post-season 8th inning game tying grand slam
2. Game 5 2004 ALCS 14th inning walk-off hit
1. Game 4 2004 ALCS 12th inning walk-off home run.
David you are a first ballot hall of famer, no doubts about it. The city of Boston thanks you, you ended decades of fan’s suffering, have brought smiles to children’s faces and are one of the most kind hearted men we will ever meet. Farewell Ortiz, you will be forever missed by Sox nation, and can’t wait to see that 34 hanging in right. Big Papi, you are a legend.