Top 5 performances by David Ortiz in his MLB career

Boston Red Sox legend David Ortiz
Boston Red Sox legend David Ortiz
Daniel Santiago

David Ortiz amassed a plethora of awards during his 20-year MLB career. He has been hailed as one of the most clutch performers of his generation and has just been elected to the 2022 National Baseball Hall of Fame.

On this list, we take a look at the Dominican's most legendary moments. From his surprise win in the 2010 Home Run Derby to the home run that sparked the comeback that ended the Curse of the Bambino, we'll dive into Big Papi's top five performances of his career.

David Ortiz's Top 5 Performances of All Time

#5 2010 Home Run Derby victory

Why is this so special, you might ask? It's because David Ortiz battled a contemporary who was eight years younger than him in the finals of the event and beat him to win the title.


Ortiz outlasted then-Marlins shortstop Hanley Ramirez 11-5 in the final round for a total score of 32 against the young gun's 26. He would go on to smash 32 homers to end the 2010 regular season. Not bad for the then-37-year-old.

#4 Opening the 2004 World Series with a bang!

Fresh off an emotional American League Championship Series win, Big Papi opened the World Series with a three-run banger off St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Woody Williams. This might have been one of the catalysts for the utter dismantling of the Cardinals by the Red Sox as they swept the Cards 4-0.


Big Papi would finish that year's postseason with 19 RBIs, tied for the all-time record during that time.

#3 THAT grand slam against the Detroit Tigers in the 2013 ALCS

ALCS - Detroit Tigers v Boston Red Sox - Game Two
ALCS - Detroit Tigers v Boston Red Sox - Game Two

Even in the late stages of his career, Big Papi wouldn't go down without a fight. Down by a game and four runs against Detroit in Game 2 of the 2013 ALCS, David Ortiz sent the ball to the stands for a game-tying grand slam that sent Detroit's Torii Hunter flying over the wall into the Red Sox bullpen.


This was a pivotal moment in the series as the Red Sox won the in the ninth and tied the series up. They would then beat the Tigers in six games on their way to winning the 2013 World Series.

#2 A star is born

In what was a precursor to the things that were about to unfold in his career, David Ortiz's heroics in Game 3 of the 2004 American League Division Series against the Anaheim Angels took the runner-up spot on this list.


Big Papi hit the walk-off two-run homer off Angels pitcher Jarrod Washburn and above the Green Monster, sending the Red Sox to a fairytale 2004 postseason run. He ended the game with four hits and three RBIs.

#1 The homer that started the comeback for the ages

ALCS: Yankees v Red Sox Game 4
ALCS: Yankees v Red Sox Game 4

October 17, 2004, was perhaps the most important home run of David Ortiz's illustrious career. Trailing the New York Yankees 3-0 in the series and with the game tied at 4-4 in the bottom of the 12th inning, Big Papi unleashed a two-run walk-off homer to salvage the game and the series for the Red Sox.


The Red Sox would then win all the succeeding games in the series and in the process became the first, and so far, the only Major League Baseball team to come from a 3-0 deficit in the playoffs to win the series. With their momentum riding high, they went on to sweep the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series to end their 86-year long championship drought.

Edited by Jodi Whisenhunt


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