The Boston Red Sox officially retired No. 34 in honor of David Ortiz in a special ceremony at Fenway Park on Friday night.
"I love you, Boston," Big Papi told Red Sox Nation. "Thank you."
U.S. & World
Red Sox legends like Carl Yastrzemski, and relatives of others, like Johnny Pesky, were on hand to congratulate the slugging designated hitter.
Some of his former teammates, including Hall of Fame pitcher Pedro Martinez, catcher Jason Varitek, knuckleballer Tim Wakefield, and second baseman Dustin Pedroia, also honored Ortiz. Martinez and Pedroia both paid tribute in speeches.
Friday morning, JetBlue unveiled a new Big Papi and Red Sox themed gate at Logan Airport. The gate, appropriately C34, is adorned with photos of Ortiz's top 10 Red Sox moments and his jersey. Ortiz was on hand for the dedication.
"I have been around for a long time and it's been a blessing being part of Boston," Ortiz said.
Big Papi played for the Red Sox for 14 consecutive seasons, helping the team win a total of three World Seriess Championships.
On Thursday afternoon, the Red Sox and the City of Boston renamed the Yawkee Way extension near Fenway Park "David Ortiz Drive" in honor of the player.
Later in the day, Big Papi was roasted by friends and fellow heavy hitters in major league sports.
Friday's game against the Los Angeles Angels is set to begin at 7:10 p.m. but fans are encouraged to arrive earlier for the ceremony.