David Ortiz will retire at end of 2016 season.

E5 Yaz

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That is a fabulous read. I didn't know the story that Peavy told of him wearing a fancy suit to the game when he hit 2 HRs and pissed off Price with the pimping. I LOVE that story. And I love that Wake makes sure to explain what he's doing with his charitable work. I hate this season because it is his last.
So many great tidbits in there. Those Twins teams sounded like a blast
 
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My favorite fact from that article, which had somehow escaped my knowledge before, was that Ortiz came in 3rd in Boston's 2013 mayoral election. Got an enormous number of write-in votes. Given the World Series he had just had, perhaps it's not a surprise, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.
 

TheoShmeo

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My favorite fact from that article, which had somehow escaped my knowledge before, was that Ortiz came in 3rd in Boston's 2013 mayoral election. Got an enormous number of write-in votes. Given the World Series he had just had, perhaps it's not a surprise, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.
I think his colorful "campaign speech" might have had something to do with that, as well.

It's getting a little dusty in here as I contemplate that David's last opener is in a few hours (weather permitting). Other than Brady, I can't think of a Boston athlete I will miss more.
 

NYCSox

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So is there anything Pedro didn't do for this team?

Also Bowa is going to get a lot of grief for daring to use the names Ortiz and Jeter in the same sentence.
 

mwonow

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I think his colorful "campaign speech" might have had something to do with that, as well.

It's getting a little dusty in here as I contemplate that David's last opener is in a few hours (weather permitting). Other than Brady, I can't think of a Boston athlete I will miss more.
Ditto - I get a little sadder every time I see this thread title.

But that oral history was a great read - thanks, E5!
 

whatittakes

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I think his colorful "campaign speech" might have had something to do with that, as well.

It's getting a little dusty in here as I contemplate that David's last opener is in a few hours (weather permitting). Other than Brady, I can't think of a Boston athlete I will miss more.
Do you really think David Ortiz will be done with this town when he retires?
 

TheoShmeo

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Do you really think David Ortiz will be done with this town when he retires?
I don't know. Probably not. I hope not.

But I was referring to his on field role. Seeing him with even the chance for another Ortiz walk off yesterday was a privilege that I am going to miss. Seeing him in the Bobby Orr, Bill Russell, Ty Law or Pedro post-playing role will be quite nice but not at all comparable.
 

whatittakes

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Well there's this little tidbit he dropped at the end of a puff piece

"If I get bored," Ortiz said, "I'll just call the Red Sox and ask them to activate me again
http://espn.go.com/blog/boston/red-sox/post/_/id/48797/fresh-jackie-bradley-jr-familiar-david-ortiz-faces-lead-red-sox-over-yankees

I already posted that in the media forum because I wasn't sure it was quite main board worthy and it seemed more a media thing than a baseball thing, but if we're going to speculate about Papi retirement, dropping that line seems germane, even if he is probably just joking.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
Here are some records for age-40 seasons that Ortiz might conceivably be going after this year. Numbers after the parenthesis are the number Ortiz needs the rest of the way (or in the case of SLG, the average Ortiz needs to maintain the rest of the way to match the record if he maintains his current pace of AB/team game).

HR: 34 (Darrell Evans, 1987) Ortiz: 30
2B: 35 (Sam Rice, 1930) Ortiz: 24
RBI: 108 (Dave Winfield, 1992) Ortiz: 90
BB: 112 (Willie Mays, 1971) Ortiz: 100
IBB: 17 (Stan Musial, 1961) Ortiz: 15
TB: 286 (Winfield 1992) Ortiz: 240
SLG: .501 (Evans 1987) Ortiz: .483

The BB thing is a very long shot (Mays 1971 was a ridiculous season, the highest WAR for a 40-year-old in history by almost a win and a half). But everything else on the list looks possible.

One more tidbit:

There are 94 players in history with at least 2000 PA after age 35. Of that group, Ortiz ranks #4 in both SLG and OPS. The only people ahead of him are Bonds, Williams, and Ruth.
 

Rasputin

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You know how aging superstar athletes in other cities retire and then unretire and retire and unretire and about five minutes in, you just want them to go the fuck away?

I'd be totally fine if Papi wanted to do that.

He can play the last two thirds of a season for the next three years if he wants.

And by three years, I mean thirty.
 

Harry Hooper

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If he just played home games next year until the postseason, all the sendoffs at the road ballparks this year would still be appropriate.
 

kieckeredinthehead

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HR: 34 (Darrell Evans, 1987) Ortiz: 30
2B: 35 (Sam Rice, 1930) Ortiz: 24
RBI: 108 (Dave Winfield, 1992) Ortiz: 90
BB: 112 (Willie Mays, 1971) Ortiz: 100
IBB: 17 (Stan Musial, 1961) Ortiz: 15
TB: 286 (Winfield 1992) Ortiz: 240
Another way to look for it is his pace. Before tonight (i.e. after 23 games in a 162 game season), Ortiz was on pace for:

HR: 28
2B: 77 (*single season record is 67)
RBI: 127
BB: 85
IBB: 14
TB: 324

It's been a good April.
 

soxhop411

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“@alexspeier: Ortiz is the 10th player since 1913 (so, likely ever) to open a season at age 40+ with 5+ homers in April.”
 

shaggydog2000

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He can play the last two thirds of a season for the next three years if he wants.
Ah, the ol' Pedro Martinez pre-retirement "senior status" plan? Clemens may have invented it but I'd prefer to think Pedro made it cool.

And yeah, however much he still wants to play, we can pay him by the plate appearance if need be. I would prefer a Tim Wakefield contract, but I'll take what I can get. The guy is miles from being 'done', in terms of his game-ready skills.
 

glasspusher

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Hey, not to split hairs (so I'll split hairs), the guy who played left field in 1958 for the Red Sox won the batting crown and had a slugging percentage of .584. Are we saying he wasn't 40 that year because he turned 40 in August of that year (more than halfway through the season)?
 

Rasputin

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Hey, not to split hairs (so I'll split hairs), the guy who played left field in 1958 for the Red Sox won the batting crown and had a slugging percentage of .584. Are we saying he wasn't 40 that year because he turned 40 in August of that year (more than halfway through the season)?
Yes.
 

whatittakes

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If we're using Ted Williams as an analogy, or as an example, it's worth pointing out that after struggling in his age 40 season Williams went on to kill it again as usual at age 41 with a 190 OPS+ and probably still had something in the tank when he went out on his own terms, especially if the DH rule had been in place in 1961. Unless Big Papi shows signs that his plate skills are wearing down (and I don't think he has, at least not so far, we'll see what a long season does to the big man) it's a safe bet that if he decided to unretire sometime in 2017, he could be a positive asset.

Thing is, we're in a decent position to deal with a post-Ortiz situation, our offensive depth is pretty strong and we have some prospects in the wings that are either good for trading for what we need, or may earn a place themselves, and in that situation we absolutely could absorb and deal with a year where Ortiz felt he had something left and turned out to be wrong. It's as low risk at the moment as these things are ever going to be, so I do expect the team to try to kick the tires and see if Big Papi wants one last encore in 2017. I'd rather have a 41 year old David Ortiz manning the DH spot next year than Pablo sandoval, but that's just me.
 

snowmanny

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Thing is, we're in a decent position to deal with a post-Ortiz situation, our offensive depth is pretty strong and we have some prospects in the wings that are either good for trading for what we need, or may earn a place themselves, and in that situation we absolutely could absorb and deal with a year where Ortiz felt he had something left and turned out to be wrong. It's as low risk at the moment as these things are ever going to be, so I do expect the team to try to kick the tires and see if Big Papi wants one last encore in 2017. I'd rather have a 41 year old David Ortiz manning the DH spot next year than Pablo sandoval, but that's just me.
That paragraph starts with you saying that the Red Sox are in "a decent position to deal with a post-Ortiz situation" and ends with you speculating that if Ortiz really retires the DH could be Sandoval, which is the opposite of decent.

I'm sure they will replace him with someone pretty good not named Pablo. Given that the only MLB player with a better OPS than Ortiz since last July still has a couple years left in NatsTown I'm expecting that whatever they do to replace Papi's at-bats will fall short of Ortiz' numbers.
 

whatittakes

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I can't help but feel that in the absence of Ortiz, the first thing they will try is to put Pablo in as the DH. We're in a good position because after that fails, we still have a few moves we can make internally to supply a good solution at DH. Examples of good potential DH options include Hanley or Shaw (if Moncada is able to play 3B at a starting level by the end of next season), Swihart (to give him additional PA's while sharing time with CV), and possibly even Pedroia depending on whether playing the field keeps getting him hurt or not. "all of the above, at varying times depending on who is hot and who needs a rest" also works, especially with a guy like Holt around.

I only mention Pedroia because he seems to have a penchant for getting himself hurt in the last couple years which IMHO coincides with his recklessness while making defensive plays, the injury bug has bitten him hard the last couple years with him missing significant time and performing below his standards offensively. If moving him to the DH spot 2 games out of 5 kept him healthier and a guy like Holt was playing 2B in the other games, a guy we know can handle the position at a decent level, that's definitely one way to use the DH spot to improve the team.
 
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smastroyin

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I don't think he is coming back, but I guess it's nice to think about.

On a more mundane level, his huge start with 2B is giving him a shot at the top 10 all-time. He currently has 595, and it seems inevitable he'll get to number 11 at least (Molitor and Waner with 605). Can he add another 18 to tie Aaron (624) at 10? That would be 40 2B on the year, a feat he's only done once since 2011 (though he hit 37 last year) I would have put the odds really low at the start of the year but the early surge puts it in reach. Now, let's just get it out of the way that being a LHH in Fenway is just about the best thing for doubles production, but it's still a pretty impressive feat.
 

MyDaughterLovesTomGordon

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The large father is currently rocking an OPS+ of 185, which would be the best of his career. He remains pretty set on retiring, from every interview I've seen, with no door openings.

So, it's probably fair to wonder:

Has any other member of either the 3,000 hit club or 500 HR club (or perhaps just Hall of Famer) ever had a final season that was by some measure the best of their career?

Because Clemente's career ended with his death, I thought of him, but even his final very good season was nowhere near his best.

Shoeless Joe's last season was very good, with a 172, but he had a few full seasons in the 190s (which surprised me - didn't realize just how good he was, actually), and he's not a HoFer or a member of either club, obviously.

Jackie Robinson had a nice final season, but nothing to compare with his best years.

I'm sure Papi will probably slump at some point and his season will come down to earth a bit. It's early. But it's still worth pondering whether he might put together the best final season ever in MLB with his retirement.
 

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From everything I glean from pundits, the most irreplaceable part of Ortiz will be his impact on team mates and younger players. Encarnacion or Bautista can help replace his production but no one's going to replace his presence.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
But it's still worth pondering whether he might put together the best final season ever in MLB with his retirement.
He's got an excellent shot at the best final season ever by a batting-title-qualifying Red Sox player, by OPS+ at least; the best one to date according to Play Index was Bob Johnson's 125 in 1945. He's also got a shot at Chick Stahl's franchise-best final-season bWAR of 4.1.
 

edoug

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The large father is currently rocking an OPS+ of 185, which would be the best of his career. He remains pretty set on retiring, from every interview I've seen, with no door openings.

So, it's probably fair to wonder:

Has any other member of either the 3,000 hit club or 500 HR club (or perhaps just Hall of Famer) ever had a final season that was by some measure the best of their career?

Because Clemente's career ended with his death, I thought of him, but even his final very good season was nowhere near his best.

Shoeless Joe's last season was very good, with a 172, but he had a few full seasons in the 190s (which surprised me - didn't realize just how good he was, actually), and he's not a HoFer or a member of either club, obviously.

Jackie Robinson had a nice final season, but nothing to compare with his best years.

I'm sure Papi will probably slump at some point and his season will come down to earth a bit. It's early. But it's still worth pondering whether he might put together the best final season ever in MLB with his retirement.
Not as a hitter obviously, but Koufax was terrific his final season.
 

timlinin8th

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From everything I glean from pundits, the most irreplaceable part of Ortiz will be his impact on team mates and younger players. Encarnacion or Bautista can help replace his production but no one's going to replace his presence.
I'm hoping if he is set on retiring that he at least stays on in the Wakefield/Pedro "special advisor" type role. His knowledge and approach to the game would be invaluable to this team.
 

Devizier

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Has any other member of either the 3,000 hit club or 500 HR club (or perhaps just Hall of Famer) ever had a final season that was by some measure the best of their career?
There really aren't any players for whom their last season is their best.

That said, Will Clark had 2200+ hits and 280+ home runs and posted his best OPS in his final season. He was a part-time player by that point and his totals were era-inflated (2000).
 

keninten

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I'm hoping if he is set on retiring that he at least stays on in the Wakefield/Pedro "special advisor" type role. His knowledge and approach to the game would be invaluable to this team.
How about Varitek managing, Papi as bench coach, Manny as hitting coach, Pedro as pitching coach, and Wakefield as bullpen coach. Kapler ad Dave Roberts as base coaches. It`s alright to dream on an off day right.
 

Seels

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How about Varitek managing, Papi as bench coach, Manny as hitting coach, Pedro as pitching coach, and Wakefield as bullpen coach. Kapler ad Dave Roberts as base coaches. It`s alright to dream on an off day right.
Where's Francona in this scenario?
 

simplicio

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And where does Pedey sit when he's done playing? (I guess he's small, they can squeeze him in somewhere)

Seriously though, is there a point at which too many alumni become a distraction?

Edit: whoops, dudes.
 
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whatittakes

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From everything I glean from pundits, the most irreplaceable part of Ortiz will be his impact on team mates and younger players. Encarnacion or Bautista can help replace his production but no one's going to replace his presence.
I think this is just one of those areas you have to count on the youngsters to figure out on their own, the same way Big Papi did.

but if you want a steadying presence in a clubhouse, if you want that one guy that keeps everyone else motivated, we've already heard some very very good things about Christian Vazquez in that respect. He's clearly a leader on the field, we've all seen examples of CV's infections enthusiasm, and the players say his antics give them confidence on the field. And you hear good things from time to time about his clubhouse presence too.

Give him a few years (and hopefully a ring or two!) under his belt, and I think CV is in an excellent position to begin to form the future leadership core of the Boston Red Sox. He can't do that on his own of course, but if you're looking for a place to start you could do a lot worse!
 

Papelbon's Poutine

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Couldn't they just have paid for the footage? I'm not sure I want to see Ortiz try to reenact what was such a powerful moment because of its spontaneity, surrounded by Mark Walhberg dressed in a Pedroia uniform.
 

brandonchristensen

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They will probably use some of the real footage, but may need some extra stuff to place Mark in the vicinity when it happens.
 

geoduck no quahog

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I hope he retires...and I hope he retires on top.

I couldn't live with him coming back in 2017, having a bad month of April...and watching all the real fans scream for him to get off the field because he "sucks".
 

JimD

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I hope he retires...and I hope he retires on top.

I couldn't live with him coming back in 2017, having a bad month of April...and watching all the real fans scream for him to get off the field because he "sucks".
This is where I am. Hopefully we get a few more October highlights to burnish the legend. I'm also of the belief that finishing strong and ending his career with something left in the tank will only benefit his HoF chances.
 
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I dunno, I think "his team begged him to delay his retirement, until he finally relented" has some value to his HoF chances too. The no-doubters all retire on their terms, even if they are a shadow of their former selves (Jeter). The borderline cases are helped by counting stats and narratives. Ortiz has plenty of narrative, but his career didn't really get started until age 27 (and he wasn't even close a regular until age 24). He could use the counting stats, and the narrative of "most productive late career in the post-steroids era".
 

joe dokes

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To the extent we "know" Ortiz, I can't see him *not* retiring. Other than winning (another) World Series, there aren't really any reachable milestones like 600 HRs (509; I dont think getting 500 with the Sox (451) is a huge deal for him) or 3000 hits (2331) or 2000 RBIs (1663). I believed him when he said the effort it took to get ready for and compete in an entire season of 140+ games was getting to be too much. He's already gotten a taste of the awkwardness (or worse) that comes with ineffectiveness. He's an emotional guy (sensitive in an almost always good way), and even if only 1% of fans were murmuring or worse in his one-year-too-many, it would be more than he wants to risk hearing. My sense is that he wants to go out like Mariano Rivera, not Derek Jeter, two equally iconic players whose ends he saw up close at a time when he was already thinking about his own baseball mortality.
 

EllisTheRimMan

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To the extent we "know" Ortiz, I can't see him *not* retiring. Other than winning (another) World Series, there aren't really any reachable milestones like 600 HRs (509; I dont think getting 500 with the Sox (451) is a huge deal for him) or 3000 hits (2331) or 2000 RBIs (1663). I believed him when he said the effort it took to get ready for and compete in an entire season of 140+ games was getting to be too much. He's already gotten a taste of the awkwardness (or worse) that comes with ineffectiveness. He's an emotional guy (sensitive in an almost always good way), and even if only 1% of fans were murmuring or worse in his one-year-too-many, it would be more than he wants to risk hearing. My sense is that he wants to go out like Mariano Rivera, not Derek Jeter, two equally iconic players whose ends he saw up close at a time when he was already thinking about his own baseball mortality.

This is a great point of view that I share. He wants to retire after winning his 4th WS this year and so far he's making sure that's going to happen. If we get in the playoffs watch out. Ortiz may pull a Bugs Bunny and play every position just to make sure he goes out in style.