'Truly Honored And Blessed By My Selection': Former Boston Red Sox Slugger David Ortiz On His Induction Into The Baseball Hall of Fame

David Ortiz
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Ernesto Cova

It's not so usual to see the BBWAA send a former MLB player to the Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility. Then again, David Ortiz isn't like most retired stars.

Ortiz made a case for being a first-ballot Hall of Famer nearly a decade before hanging the cleats, building an everlasting legacy at Fenway Park as perhaps the last legend in Boston Red Sox's recent history.

Now, and after nearly dying a couple of years ago, his journey will end where it was always destined to: In Cooperstown.

Ortiz Says He's Honored

David Ortiz celebrating
Giphy | MLB

Ortiz got the call late last night and it didn't take him long to thank the fans and look back on his incredible journey from Santo Domingo to the Hall of Fame:

"I am truly honored and blessed by my selection to the Hall of Fame — the highest honor that any baseball player can reach in their lifetime. I am grateful to the baseball writers who considered my career in its totality, not just on the statistics, but also on my contributions to the Red Sox, the City of Boston, and all of Red Sox Nation. I am also grateful to my teammates, my managers and coaches and Red Sox ownership for their faith in me and allowing me to be part of three World Championships.

For a young boy from Santo Domingo, I always dreamed of playing professional baseball. Thanks to the encouragement of my father, Leo, and my mother, Angela Rosa, I knew from my earliest days at Estudia Espaillat High School in the Dominican Republic that I had the opportunity to pursue my dream of playing in the big leagues. And while my path to success was not straightforward, it was my friend, the Hall of Famer, Pedro Martinez, who convinced the Red Sox to give me a chance to achieve success. And while my path to Boston took 10 years, those 14 years in a Red Sox uniform were the best of my life. We broke the curse and then got two more championships before I retired in 2016 — what a sweet and beautiful journey it has been," Ortiz wrote, per NBC Sports.

A Legendary Career

David Ortiz hitting
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Big Papi was a no-brainer to make it to the Hall of Fame.

Throughout his incredible 20-year career in the Big Show, he amassed a whopping batting average of .286, had 541 home runs, 1,419 runs scored, 1,768 runs batted in, an OBP of .320, an SLG of .552, and an OPS of .931.

He was a ten-time All-Star, HR derby champion, seven-time Silver Slugger, ALCS MVP, three-time World Series champion, and World Series MVP. It doesn't get much better than that.

Barry Bonds Snubbed Again

Barry Bonds hitting
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Once again, the Hall of Fame election didn't come without plenty of controversies. Barry Bonds missed the cut in the final year of eligibility, as well as Roger Clemens.

This was somewhat surprising as the BBWAA has blatantly refused to give these legends their flowers due to their involvement in the steroids scandal. Even so, you just can't tell the history of baseball without one of the greatest sluggers of all time and the leader in Cy Young awards.

Now, Bonds, Clemens, and Curt Schilling will hope to get the nod in the Today's Game ballot in December.