The 2019 Boston Red Sox season has not gone as planned. Marred by inconsistency, injury, and most recently the firing of president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski.
But on Monday, all that will take a back seat as fan-favorite and Red Sox legend David Ortiz will make his return to Fenway Park for the first time since he was shot in the Dominican Republic back in June.
Ian Browne of MLB.com reported on Monday the Big Papi would be present at Fenway to throw out the first pitch before the Red Sox game against their rival New York Yankees.
Ortiz, as predicted, came out to a roar at Fenway Park and threw out the first pitch to his former teammate Jason Varitek.
Ortiz then spoke to the crowd at Fenway in his first public appearance since being shot. He thanked God for giving him a second chance at life and Red Sox nation for its unwavering support and throughout his recovery process.
Road to Recovery
Ortiz has had quite the road to recovery since being shot in June. He was transported by the Red Sox to Mass General Hospital in Boston using a special medical air ambulance. He stayed in Boston, underwent multiple surgical procedures, and remained in intensive care for an extended period of time.
He was finally released and has been working his way back to his same jovial self over the last few weeks. Ortiz dropped his daughter off at Berklee College of Music in Boston a couple weeks ago and visited the French Riviera on vacation with his wife.
Ortiz has gotten the support of several fixtures from around baseball during his recovery. Even fellow Dominican slugger and current New York Yankees designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion has spent time with Ortiz in recent weeks.
Future Plans for Papi
With Big Papi out of the hospital he can start to get back to his usual routine. One thing Ortiz will likely be doing in the coming months will be returning to television. Ortiz serves as a pundit on Fox’s coverage of the MLB playoffs and was supposed to be at the MLB All-Star Game before the shooting derailed his plans.
There was originally speculation that Ortiz would be joining the Red Sox television broadcast on New England Sports Network but those plans never came to fruition. Ortiz sits alongside fellow former MLB players Frank Thomas and Alex Rodriguez on the Fox set and has worked with that crew since the 2017 Playoffs.
Ortiz’s return to broadcasting would almost signal things returning to normal for the former slugger. He has been sorely missed on the crew during his absence and recovery and will add even more experience to the panel.