There are simply no words that can describe the impact that David Ortiz had on not just the Red Sox organization, but the city of Boston as well.
His rallying cry in the wake of the April 2013 Boston Marathon bombing was as influential as his .688 batting average in the World Series later that year. He brought an aching city a World Series after 86 long years, defeating the arch-rival Yankees to do so. His 541 home runs (483 in a Red Sox uniform), 10 All-Star appearances, and 5 finishes in the top-5 of the AL MVP voting punctuate his legacy alongside his three World Series rings.
Simply put, the Red Sox will never be the same without No. 34.
The Ortiz Hall of Fame debate rages on. Many -- myself included -- believe he'll make it to Cooperstown shortly. But regardless of what happens to him in the eyes of Major League Baseball and the Baseball Writers' Association of America, he'll always be a legend in Boston. With any luck, he'll join Pedro Martinez, Johnny Pesky and several other former Red Sox legends by staying close to the team. It's tough to imagine a better advisor than Big Papi.
Throughout the Red Sox storied history, there are certain legends that stand out above the rest. Babe Ruth. Ted Williams. Carl Yastrzemski. David Ortiz joins those hallowed few.
Despedida, Papi. Thank you for 14 amazing seasons.
By Will Brabrook