David Ortiz has a way with words.
He’s so good at speaking English, his second language, that he can drop an F-bomb basically anywhere and get away with it.
The FCC famously did not flinch when Ortiz shouted into the public address microphone at Fenway Park in April of 2013: “This is our f***ing city! And no one is going to dictate our freedom. Stay strong!”
With those choice words, Ortiz broke Boston out of a weeklong funk following the horrific acts at that year’s Boston Marathon.
Just this week, the typically conservative NESN allowed Ortiz to drop celebratory F-bombs in the visitors clubhouse at Yankee Stadium after the Sox had clinched the American League East. No one tells a 6-foot-3, 230-pound man with a giant champagne bottle to “tone it down,” after all.
There was also an incident in 2011, when Ortiz crashed former Sox manager Terry Francona’s press conference to complain that the Fenway Park scorekeeper kept slighting him.
A day earlier, Ortiz was initially credited with two RBIs but after the game the official scorer at Fenway changed the play to an error – meaning Ortiz only got one RBI.
“I’m f***ing pissed. We need to have a talk,” Ortiz shouted to Francona and a startled media contingent. “F***ing scorekeeper always f***ing s*** up.”
Ortiz, of course, was concerned with winning ball-games – first and foremost. But the Sox slugger was also very protective of his own numbers.
Big Papi was simply obsessed with team and individual success, and that obsession certainly paid off. No. 34 will get a send-off fit for a king this weekend at Fenway.