I was honestly a little surprised to see the microphone passed to him to close out the emotional and well produced pregame ceremony at Fenway Park on Saturday. But he is, after all, the longest tenured Boston Red Sox player in uniform, and, let's be honest, he's their most recognizable face and voice as well.
He was actually the perfect guy to deliver that final, heartfelt message to the city he's called home for the past ten years, and though you may not completely agree with the colorful language he uses, his statement is quick, loud, clear, and one-hundred percent on point.
Here's the video now courtesy of MLB. There's a well-timed bleep so you should be safe to watch this anywhere.
"This is our f------ city. And no one is going to dictate our freedom. Stay strong."
Those sixteen words are the ones that everyone is already buzzing about and will be for some team.
Honestly, I would say Ortiz didn't need to go there to get his message across, but if any one statement captures the emotion — the anger, the pride, all of it — that has gone into this terrifying week for those in and around Boston, Ortiz absolutely nailed it. The fans let him know it, too, because the response was among the loudest we heard throughout a 20-minute ceremony that included all 37,000 plus in attendance singing the national anthem.
And you'll never guess who else approved.
David Ortiz spoke from the heart at today's Red Sox game. I stand with Big Papi and the people of Boston - Julius
— The FCC (@FCC) April 20, 2013
That's straight from FCC chairman Julius Genachowski.
There's a right time, and there's a wrong time to be too emotional. Today was definitely the right time (and yes, I know there were children in the building) but you're certainly free to chime in with your disagreements in the comments section.
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- David Ortiz