I Wasn’t Emotionally Ready For The Absence of David Ortiz
Yesterday was, by all accounts, a good day for Boston Red Sox fans. Opening Day was at Fenway, the sun was shining and the Sox got a win. There really wasn’t a whole lot to complain about during the game unless you want to get really critical and negative. However, I couldn’t help but be a little bit sad when it actually hit me that the Red Sox did not have David Ortiz anymore.
He wouldn’t be striding to the plate, Rick Ross music blaring, and igniting fear in the opposing pitcher. There would be no more towering drives followed by a master level pimp job and a slow trot around the bases. I was not ready for this at all.
Instead, we had what felt like a glaring hole in the lineup. I saw Dustin Pedroia, Andrew Benintendi, Mookie Betts, and then wait, Hanley Ramirez? Why’s Hanley up there already? What did you just say? Mitch Moreland is following him in the five hole? Wow, that is the most depressing thing I’ve ever heard.
I guess I never really took it all that seriously that Ortiz was in fact retiring. I’m not joking, I was kind of waiting all offseason for the him to decide he wasn’t ready to hang it up. I think I’m still waiting and I probably will be all year long. I still have some hope that he’ll realize that’s what he wants to do and he’ll be back hitting taters by June.
I’m twenty-three years old, so I’ve grown up with Ortiz being a staple in the batters box for most of my life. I was in the third grade when he joined the team and I had probably only been paying attention to baseball for a year. I know nothing else besides having that presence there year in and year out, to hit 30 home runs and drive in 110. I feel like a piece of me is gone and it got replaced with Mitch Moreland.
So despite the nice start from Rick Porcello and the three run bomb by Benintendi, my Opening Day was a little bittersweet. This whole season will be about coming to grips with the fact that Big Papi is probably not stepping back up to the plate. I’m in the early stages and trying to cope. Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers.