David Ortiz is Greatest Late Inning Postseason Hitter of His Generation

By Shaun P Kernahan
David Ortiz
Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Sunday was an all-time great day in the greater Boston area sports history. Tom Brady orchestrated an unreal last second comeback as the New England Patriots knocked off the previously undefeated New Orleans Saints, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia came through with a walk-off single to tie the ALCS at one game a piece.  While the Brady pass and Salty walk-off were incredible, there might not have been a play as incredible as the David Ortiz game tying grand slam in the eighth inning.

Fun fact about the grand slam: David Ortiz successfully gave four different pitchers an earned run with a single swing of the bat, as all three men on base had reached on a different pitcher, and the grand slam came on Joaquin Benoit‘s first pitch of the night.

If you were to ask any Boston Red Sox fan before the game, who do you think will come through with a game tying grand slam in the eighth inning of the game, about 100 out of 100 would have said “Big Papi”.  His legend began in 2004, and nearly a decade later, he is simply adding to it.

There was a walk-off single against Mariano Rivera in the 2004 ALCS and a walk-off home run in the series.  Before even getting to the ALCS, Papi hit a walk-off home run against the then Anaheim Angels to send the Red Sox to the next round.  In 2007 he racked up 17 hits with three home runs and ten runs batted in to lead the Red Sox to a World Series title.

It seems whenever the Red Sox go on to do great things, David Ortiz has a very large part in making it happen. And if that continues to be the case, Sunday’s grand slam injected plenty of optimism into Red Sox fans.

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