Last night as the final out was recorded in the Indians vs Red Sox series, a career came to an end. For an entire season all of baseball has known that David Ortiz was going to retire. Despite having a season worthy of winning the MVP, Ortiz never changed his decision to retire at seasons end. And last night, with tears filling his eyes, Ortiz truly understood and felt the end of his career.
Ortiz has been an iconic figure in baseball and especially in baseball. He has had historic moments that will live for decades, maybe even centuries in the baseball world. Along with all of the good there have also been accusations and what some people think are black marks on his career. I wanted to touch on the good, the bad and the future of David Ortiz
PEDs have been and still are an issue in Major League Baseball, and although Oritz has never been suspended for using PEDs many have raised questions about his possible use. Even in his final season, as he has put up MVP numbers, many question if he is doing this naturally. Some even go so far as to say that even if he failed a drug test that this season MLB wasn’t going to touch Ortiz.
As a person who is not even close to anyone or anything related to Ortiz, the Red Sox, or MLB drug testing all I can touch on is what I know. I know that he has never been suspended. For what that is worth, I am going off of that information to make my judgments on his career.
People love Ortiz. Teammates, fans, coaches, honestly I haven’t heard anyone talk bad about Ortiz. He is a player that loves and enjoys the game. In fact I would say that other than Adrian Beltre, who has more fun than anyone in MLB, Ortiz is the biggest kid out having fun at the ballpark and enjoying every second of it.
He has led the Red Sox to three World Series titles. With huge homeruns he was key to breaking ‘the curse’ that had hung over Boston for so many years.
He was also key in huge moments in recent American history. When the city of Boston needed someone to speak for them after the marathon bombings, it was Ortiz who truly said what was on everyone’s minds. It was Ortiz that help not just Boston, but our country to realize we could be angry, but also understand that there would be healing.
With his career now at an end we will have to look back to remember the things he accomplished on the field. It will be judged and discussed by many as to whether or not Ortiz will get into the Hall of Fame. Now I can easily say that Ortiz shouldn’t get in until Edgar Martinez gets in. How can a full time DH get into the Hall of Fame before the DH whose name sits on the award given to the best DH each season.
I wont do that though. Ortiz is a Hall of Fame player because of what he accomplished on the field. I’m not going to put restrictions or stipulations on his Hall of Fame status. Either a player is a Hall of Famer or they aren’t. Ortiz is a Hall of Famer.
I know there are some who will argue. The idea of potential PED use or the fact that he was just a DH weighs to heavy for them to vote him a Hall of Famer. That’s fine, it is there choice. I can’t do that though. Ortiz is one of the best hitters I’ve ever seen. He loves the game and plays with heart, passion and joy. I’m sad he is retiring, but glad I got to watch him play.