It's been a long time.
A long time since the Big Man took that sweet, vicious swing, since the ball soared deep into the night, since Fenway rocked while he lumbered around the bases, the ever-present smile wider than ever.
It's been so long that we'd forgotten what it feels like — forgotten, perhaps, that no one has ever done this as many times in a Red Sox uniform. Twelve times, including the postseason, Ortiz has ended a game with a home run, all but one of those in Boston. An astounding 18 times, he's ended a game with any kind of hit — 15 of those in Boston.
It's been a rough season for Ortiz. The horrible protracted slump to start the season. The revelation that his name is among those on the (now ruled) improperly-seized list of players to have possibly tested positive for performance-enhancing substances.
But since June 1, when Ortiz bottomed out at .186/.282/.284, he's been among the best hitters in baseball — posting a .910 OPS with 21 home runs and a .556 slugging percentage. Over 162 games, that would translate to 48 homers and 135 RBI.
It's good to have him back. Baseball's just more fun when David Ortiz is hitting home runs.