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The Last Season For David Ortiz20:58
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Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz hits a third-inning, RBI single in a baseball game against the New York Yankees in New York, Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2015.   (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz hits a third-inning, RBI single in a baseball game against the New York Yankees in New York, Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
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In 2004, David Ortiz saved the Red Sox from — once again — falling victim to the curse of the Bambino. In the American League Championship series, with the New York Yankees up three games to none, Ortiz hit a home run in the 12th inning that changed the momentum of the series. The Red Sox went on to win the World Series and Ortiz became one of the most beloved players in Red Sox history. Now, Ortiz has announced that he's finally stepping away from baseball after next season — he's the last member of that winning 2004 team to leave the Sox.

Guests

Bill Littlefield, host of NPR’s Only A Game. He tweets @OnlyAGameNPR.

Anthony Brooks, WBUR’s senior political reporter. He tweets @anthonygbrooks.

Richard Johnson, curator of the New England Sports Museum.

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The Players' Tribune: Just A Kid From Santo Domingo

  • "When I was a little kid, we didn’t have money for real baseballs. So, on Three King’s Day, my sister got a new baby doll. I figured she wasn’t gonna use the old one, so I chopped off the head and shaved all the hair off. It made for a perfect baseball...The baby doll head would dip and dive when you pitched it because it wasn’t totally round. You had to track it as it was coming in. Listen, bro: If you can hit a baby doll head with a broomstick, you can hit an inside cutter. You don’t need a batting cage in the Dominican. You just have to love the game. And you need to be able to fight off your sister when she comes looking for her baby doll."

The Boston Globe: David Ortiz Faces The Reality That All Great Athletes Must Face

  • "There comes a time in every athlete’s life when his body, his soul, his head tell him it’s over. You can dangle a zillion dollars in his face, and nothing can change his mind. He looks forward to the last time he has to go through a grueling offseason workout just to endure another season. He looks forward to the last time he has to make grueling road trips that have gotten worse with the strange scheduling you’re seeing year in and year out around major league baseball."

This segment aired on November 18, 2015.

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