Red Sox Legend David Ortiz Elected To Baseball Hall of Fame
Boston Red Sox Press Release
BOSTON, MA—Former Boston Red Sox designated hitter and first baseman David Ortiz was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility, it was announced tonight on MLB Network. He received 307 votes (77.9%) cast by eligible members of the Baseball Writers Association of America.
Ortiz is one of 37 former Red Sox to be elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame for their playing careers. He joins Pedro Martinez, Ted Williams, Carl Yastrzemski, and Wade Boggs as the only individuals to earn election in their first year of eligibility after spending more seasons with the Red Sox than with any other team. Overall, Ortiz is the 58th player to earn election in their first year on the BBWAA ballot. He is the fourth player born in the Dominican Republic to be elected, joining Martinez, Vladimir Guerrero, and Juan Marichal.
“There are countless reasons why David is deserving of this honor, beginning with three World Series trophies that we would not have without his heroics on the field and his leadership,” said Red Sox Principal Owner John Henry. “He was critical in transforming the narrative around the Red Sox from one of curses and superstitions to tales of clutch moments and a collection of championships. David’s most meaningful and profound contributions, however, are not fully reflected in trophies and awards, but rather on the faces of every player held in David’s bear-hug embrace over the years, by our memories of stirring dugout rally speeches, and with his fist raised in solidarity with our community during its darkest hour. For the past two decades, David has meant the world to us and we are proud that Cooperstown will be another stop on his supremely impactful journey. Congratulations, David.”
“It has been a privilege to watch David’s storybook career in Boston for fourteen years and three World Series Championships,” said Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner. “This honor only confirms what many of us at the Red Sox and throughout New England already knew: that he is not only one of our greatest players, but one of baseball’s greatest players. Even now, as the sole BBWAA ballot inductee, he continues to stand out in the same way he did throughout his playing career. David, you deserve to take your rightful place alongside the Hall of Fame’s legends. Congratulations on this special recognition.”
“David Ortiz is the most important player to ever wear a Red Sox uniform,” said Red Sox President & CEO Sam Kennedy. “He came to Boston in relative anonymity and with his captivating personality and his formidable bat he shattered expectations and paved the franchise’s future in championships and Duck Boat parades. The record numbers he put up and the dedication he showed in meticulously honing his craft is deserving of first ballot entry into the Hall of Fame. David, Boston and Fenway Park will always be your home but we will make an exception for Cooperstown. Congratulations, my friend. Enjoy your moment.”
The 2022 National Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place Sunday, July 24, at 1:30 p.m. on the grounds of the Clark Sports Center in Cooperstown, NY. The only player elected by the BBWAA this year, Ortiz will be enshrined along with four Golden Days Era Committee electees (Gil Hodges, Jim Kaat, Minnie Miñoso, and Tony Oliva) and two Early Baseball Era Committee electees (Bud Fowler and Buck O’Neil).
Originally signed by the Seattle Mariners as an international free agent in November 1992, Ortiz compiled a lifetime .286 batting average (2,472-for-8,640) in 2,408 games with the Minnesota Twins (1997-2002) and Red Sox (2003-16), totaling 1,768 RBI, 1,419 runs scored, a .380 on-base percentage, a .552 slugging percentage, and a .931 OPS. His 541 home runs rank 17th in Major League history, while his 632 doubles rank 12th. The only other players with at least 500 home runs and 600 doubles are Hank Aaron, Albert Pujols, and Barry Bonds.
Ortiz is the all-time Major League leader in games played as a designated hitter (2,029), as well as in hits (2,191), doubles (557), home runs (485), extra-base hits (1,060), total bases (4,239), and RBI (1,569) at the position. He earned the Edgar Martinez Outstanding Designated Hitter Award a record eight times (2003-07, ’11, ’13, ’16), and his seven Louisville Slugger Silver Slugger Awards as a DH (2004-07, ’11, ’13, ’16) are the most ever at the position.
In addition to his accolades as a designated hitter, Ortiz twice earned the American League’s Hank Aaron Award (2005, ’16), given annually to the top offensive performer in each league. He finished in the top 10 in Most Valuable Player voting seven times, including in the top-five in each of his first five seasons with the Red Sox (5th, 4th, 2nd, 3rd, 4th). A 10-time All-Star, Ortiz started the Midsummer Classic for the American League seven times, twice as a first baseman (2006-07) and five times as a DH (2005, ’11-13, ’16).
Having signed with the Red Sox as a free agent on January 22, 2003, Ortiz is one of eight players to appear in at least 14 consecutive seasons for the Red Sox (2003-16), along with Carl Yastrzemski (23), Dwight Evans (19), Tim Wakefield (17), Jim Rice (16), Jason Varitek (15), Ted Williams (15), and Dustin Pedroia (14). Ortiz joins Pedroia as Boston’s only three-time World Series champions in the post-World War I era, having led the Red Sox to titles in 2004, 2007, and 2013. Ortiz is one of just four players with at least 500 career homers and three World Series championships, along with Hall of Famers Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, and Reggie Jackson.
Ortiz hit 483 home runs with the Red Sox, a total that trails only Ted Williams (521) on the franchise’s all-time list. He also ranks among all-time club leaders in RBI (3rd; 1,530), hits (6th; 2,079), doubles (3rd; 524), extra-base hits (3rd; 1,023), runs scored (5th; 1,204), walks (4th; 1,133), total bases (5th; 4,084), times on base (4th; 3,241), and games played (5th; 1,953). Among players with at least 3,000 plate appearances for the Red Sox, Ortiz ranks fourth in slugging percentage (.570) and OPS (.956), having hit .290 with a .386 on-base percentage with Boston. He is one of only five players to record as many as 10 seasons with at least 30 home runs and 100 RBI for a single team, joining Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Hank Aaron, and Albert Pujols.
In 2016—his final season as a player—Ortiz batted .315 (169-for-537) and led the Major Leagues in doubles (48), extra-base hits (87), slugging percentage (.620), and OPS (1.021), also pacing the Red Sox in home runs (38), RBI (127), walks (80), and on-base percentage (.401). He set Major League records for most homers, RBI, doubles, and extra-base hits in a final season, and also set single-season records in each of those categories for a player age 40 or older. The 2016 season was Ortiz’s 10th with at least 100 RBI, passing Ted Williams for the most such seasons in club history.
Known as the greatest clutch hitter in Red Sox history, Ortiz is the franchise’s all-time leader with 10 walk-off home runs in the regular season. He recorded an additional seven walk-off hits with Boston, as his 17 game-ending RBI rank first in franchise history. In addition to his heroics in the regular season, Ortiz hit a walk-off home run in third and final game of the 2004 ALDS against the Anaheim Angels, then won Games 4 and 5 of the 2004 ALCS with walk-off hits in Boston’s historic comeback against the New York Yankees. In 2013, he provided the signature moment of the Red Sox’ postseason by hitting a game-tying grand slam in the eighth inning of a 6-5 win over the Detroit Tigers in Game 2 of the ALCS.
Named MVP of the 2004 ALCS and of the 2013 World Series, Ortiz is the Red Sox’ career leader in postseason games (76), runs (51), hits (80), doubles (19), home runs (17), extra-base hits (38), RBI (57), total bases (154), and walks (59). Among players with at least 50 plate appearances in the Fall Classic, Ortiz owns Major League Baseball’s best-ever World Series batting average (.455), on-base percentage (.576), and OPS (1.372).
A champion of charitable initiatives, Ortiz won the 2011 Roberto Clemente Award, MLB’s highest honor for those who best represent the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field. He created the David Ortiz Children’s Fund to provide critical pediatric services in New England and in his native Dominican Republic. In Boston, he has provided his time and other resources to Mass General Hospital for Children, donating tickets to patients from the hospital as part of his “Papi’s Pals” program.
On September 13, 2017, Ortiz and the Red Sox reached a long-term agreement, allowing the former slugger to act as a mentor for current players, participate in recruitment efforts, make a variety of special appearances for the club, and work in a business development capacity for Fenway Sports Management and its partners. His uniform number (34) was formally retired during the 2017 season, and in 2022 he will be officially inducted into the Red Sox Hall of Fame.
Former Red Sox Players in the National Baseball Hall of Fame:
(*First-Ballot BBWAA Selection)
Player Inducted Years with Boston Games with Boston
*DH/1B David Ortiz 2022 (BBWAA) 2003-16 1,953
RHP Lee Smith 2019 (Veterans) 1988-90 139
*RHP Pedro Martinez 2015 (BBWAA) 1998-2004 203
*RHP John Smoltz 2015 (BBWAA) 2009 8
OF Andre Dawson 2010 (BBWAA) 1993-94 196
*OF Rickey Henderson 2009 (BBWAA) 2002 72
OF Jim Rice 2009 (BBWAA) 1974-89 2,089
*3B Wade Boggs 2005 (BBWAA) 1982-92 1,625
*RHP Dennis Eckersley 2004 (BBWAA) 1978-84, ’98 241
C Carlton Fisk 2000 (BBWAA) 1969, ’71-80 1,078
1B Tony Perez 2000 (BBWAA) 1980-82 304
DH Orlando Cepeda 1999 (Veterans) 1973 142
*RHP Tom Seaver 1992 (BBWAA) 1986 16
RHP Ferguson Jenkins 1991 (BBWAA) 1976-77 58
*OF Carl Yastrzemski 1989 (BBWAA) 1961-83 3,308
2B Bobby Doerr 1986 (Veterans) 1937-44, ’46-51 1,865
SS Luis Aparicio 1984 (BBWAA) 1971-73 367
C Rick Ferrell 1984 (Veterans) 1933-37 522
2B/OF George Kell 1983 (Veterans) 1952-54 235
RHP Juan Marichal 1983 (BBWAA) 1974 11
OF Harry Hooper 1971 (Veterans) 1909-20 1,647
SS Lou Boudreau 1970 (BBWAA) 1951-52 86
RHP Waite Hoyt 1969 (Veterans) 1919-20 35
RHP Red Ruffing 1967 (BBWAA) 1924-30 189
*OF Ted Williams 1966 (BBWAA) 1939-60 2,292
OF Heinie Manush 1964 (Veterans) 1936 82
SS Joe Cronin 1956 (BBWAA) 1935-45 1,134
OF Al Simmons 1953 (BBWAA) 1943 40
1B Jimmie Foxx 1951 (BBWAA) 1936-42 887
LHP Herb Pennock 1948 (BBWAA) 1915-17, ’19-22, ’34 201
LHP Lefty Grove 1947 (BBWAA) 1934-41 214
OF Jesse Burkett 1946 (Veterans) 1905 148
RHP Jack Chesbro 1946 (Veterans) 1909 1
3B Jimmy Collins 1945 (Veterans) 1901-07 741
OF Tris Speaker 1937 (BBWAA) 1907-15 1,065
RHP Cy Young 1937 (BBWAA) 1901-08 327
*LHP/OF Babe Ruth 1936 (BBWAA) 1914-19 391
(NOTE: The above list reflects only those elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame for their playing careers. Dick Williams played for the Red Sox from 1963-64 and was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2008 by the Veterans Committee as a manager.)
Players Elected to National Baseball Hall of Fame in First Year on BBWAA Ballot:
David Ortiz (2022)
Derek Jeter (2020)
Mariano Rivera (2019)
Roy Halladay (2019)
Chipper Jones (2018)
Jim Thome (2018)
Iván Rodriguez (2017)
Ken Griffey, Jr. (2016)
Randy Johnson (2015)
Pedro Martinez (2015)
John Smoltz (2015)
Greg Maddux (2014)
Tom Glavine (2014)
Frank Thomas (2014)
Rickey Henderson (2009)
Cal Ripken (2007)
Tony Gwynn (2007)
Wade Boggs (2005)
Paul Molitor (2004)
Dennis Eckersley (2004)
Eddie Murray (2003)
Ozzie Smith (2002)
Dave Winfield (2001)
Kirby Puckett (2001)
Nolan Ryan (1999)
George Brett (1999)
Robin Yount (1999)
Mike Schmidt (1995)
Steve Carlton (1994)
Reggie Jackson (1993)
Tom Seaver (1992)
Rod Carew (1991)
Jim Palmer (1990)
Joe Morgan (1990)
Carl Yastrzemski (1989)
Johnny Bench (1989)
Willie Stargell (1988)
Willie McCovey (1986)
Lou Brock (1985)
Brooks Robinson (1983)
Hank Aaron (1982)
Frank Robinson (1982)
Bob Gibson (1981)
Al Kaline (1980)
Willie Mays (1979)
Ernie Banks (1977)
Mickey Mantle (1974)
Warren Spahn (1973)
Sandy Koufax (1972)
Stan Musial (1969)
Ted Williams (1966)
Jackie Robinson (1962)
Bob Feller (1962)
Ty Cobb (1936)
Babe Ruth (1936)
Honus Wagner (1936)
Christy Mathewson (1936)
Walter Johnson (1936)
(NOTE FROM THE NATIONAL BASEBALL HALL OF FAME: Lou Gehrig—who received votes in 1936 while active and then was elected by acclamation in 1939—and Roberto Clemente—who was elected by special election in 1973—were each elected through a non-traditional process and are not counted among the other 58.)
BOSTON, MA—The Boston Red Sox today issued the following statement on behalf of David Ortiz:
“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.
“I am so thankful to my family and my children for being with me tonight on this special recognition. And I know my mother is throwing me kisses from heaven just like I always threw her a kiss after every home run.”