BOSTON — There weren’t many dry eyes at Fenway Park on Sunday, including those of David Ortiz.
The Red Sox designated hitter was honored ahead of his final regular-season game ever in a special pregame ceremony that included the club announcing it will retire his number next season and the state of Massachusetts dedicating a bridge in his honor.
But the best part of the festivities came when Big Papi took the microphone. As the Fenway faithful stood on its feet, Ortiz addressed the crowd to thank a long list of people who have made his incredible baseball career possible.
Things got emotional from the very start, as Ortiz choked up while mentioning his late mother, who died in a car accident in the Dominican Republic in 2002. But at the urging of the Fenway crowd, Big Papi soldiered on, wiping away tears with his father at his side before declaring, “OK, I’m back!”
Ortiz went on to thank several other important people in his life, including the rest of his family, former Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martinez and, of course, the fans.
The 40-year-old slugger has made a few notable speeches at Fenway Park in his day, but this certainly is one he’ll never forget.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images