The Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees are involved in one of the best rivalries in all of sports, so it's not often that either fanbase would ever show the opposition any love.
However, when an iconic player decides to hang up his cleats, it is acceptable for fans to give a rival a standing ovation. And that's exactly what Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz is hoping will happen in the Bronx this season.
The 40-year-old Ortiz announced back in November that the 2016 season will be his last. Big Papi has racked up three World Series titles, nine All-Star selections and more than 500 home runs over his 20-year career.
If he has it his way, the best retirement gift he will receive during his farewell tour will be a standing ovation from the Yankee Stadium crowd on Sept. 29.
New York fans may initially scoff at the notion of showing Big Papi some love. After all, this is the player who clubbed 47 home runs off their favorite team, not to mention he led the historic 2004 American League Championship Series comeback. However, it was not that long ago that Boston fans put the rivalry aside to pay their respects to retiring Yankees legends Mariano Rivera (here) and Derek Jeter (here and here and here).
Ortiz has undoubtedly caused the Yankees and their fans plenty of heartbreak throughout his Red Sox career. But for one night, New York fans should reciprocate the respect Bostonians showed outgoing Yankees stars in recent years and give Big Papi cheers (not Bronx cheers) in his final game at Yankee Stadium.