David Ortiz doesn’t want you to remember him for his 500-plus home runs, his 10 All-Star Game selections or his extensive list of playoff heroics.
Sure, those are nice. But they don’t take into account the bigger picture.
NESN’s Tom Caron recently sat down for an exclusive interview with Ortiz as the Boston Red Sox slugger prepares to retire after this season. Caron asked Ortiz what he’d like for his legacy to be and what he’d like people to remember about him after he rides off into the sunset.
Big Papi offered an interesting, well-thought-out response.
“I always say, as a human, if you always remember where you come from, everything’s going to be all right, and I try to keep it that way,” Ortiz said in the interview, a portion of which can be seen in NESN’s special presentation “David Ortiz: The Journey,” presented by Foxwoods Resort Casino. “I have been playing here for so many years and I like to take care of people, I like to take care of people. I like the people around me, the people that work with me, the people that take their time to come and see me, I want the people to go back to their houses with a good memory. I’m not a big fan of giving hard times to people. …
“I have been an OK player, but what means the most to me is being a good human being. I’ve got kids. They probably are going to want to be a baseball player one day. One of them wants to be a singer, another one wants to be a psychologist. But all I want is for them to have a good life and hear good things about their dad. … I really care more about the impact that I can make on somebody else’s life.”
Ortiz can rest assured his legacy extends beyond the diamond. From his charitable endeavors to his knack for putting smiles on people’s faces, Ortiz will be remembered for far more than his on-field greatness, making him one of the most fascinating athletes in Boston history.
“David Ortiz: The Journey,” presented by Foxwoods Resort Casino, will re-air Wednesday, Sept. 21, at 11:30 p.m. ET (after “NESN Sports Today”) and Saturday, Sept. 24 at 4 p.m. ET (before Red Sox pregame coverage).
Thumbnail photo via Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports Images