Hall Of Famer David Ortiz spent 14 seasons with the Boston Red Sox from 2003-2016. In April 2013, "Big Papi" received an invigorating reception at Fenway Park for his powerful speech in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings.
Brothers Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev orchestrated a domestic terrorist attack during the annual Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013. The city of Boston was shaken by the tragedy which resulted in three deaths, hundreds of injuries, and at least 17 people who lost limbs.
Five days later, David Ortiz took the microphone at Fenway Park and rallied the fans with an inspiring speech:
"This jersey that we wear today, doesn’t say Red Sox. It says Boston. We want to thank you, Mayor Menino, Governor Patrick, the whole Police Department for the great job that they did this past week.
"This is our f***ing city. And nobody’s gonna dictate our freedom. Stay strong."
David Ortiz Spoke straight from the heart in his raging speech about Boston Marathon Bombing at Fenway Park
David Ortiz's speech took place eight years ago, but it still arouses feelings of pride among the Boston faithful.
Apparently, Ortiz wasn't aware that he would be asked to deliver a speech during the pregame ceremony, so he didn't prepare a script. The riveting speech that Big Papi delivered was spoken straight from his heart.
In a 2015 ESPN interview, Ortiz said:
"I can tell you one thing: Any other citizen that was there when all that was going on would be as angry as I was. I wanted to say more, but I knew that I was on camera."
"This week's SI Cover: David Ortiz with the three cops who appeared on SI's Boston Marathon bombing cover in April." - @SI Vault
In 2013, "Big Papi" made it evident that he was just not playing for the Boston Red Sox, but was representing the city.
Ortiz posted a .290 average, .931 OPS, 541 homers and 1768 RBI ovrer 2408 career games with the Red Sox. He was selected to 10 MLB All-Star games and won seven Silver Slugger Awards during that span. He also led the Red Sox to three World Series titles in 2004, 2007 and 2013.
He was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame as part of the 2022 class back in January.
"I feel so thankful and grateful for being able to accomplish what I was able to accomplish," he said at the time.