By: Daniel Wilkins
On Sunday night, Red Sox legend and future Hall of Famer David Ortiz was shot and wounded in his home country of the Dominican Republic. Reportedly, the shooting occurred in his hometown of Santo Domingo, one of the most populous cities in the DR. According to Justin Dougherty on Twitter, he denied initial reports stating that it occurred during a robbery. The first to report on the matter was Hector Gomez, a renowned Latin American reporter, and the news wasn’t confirmed until videos surfaced of Ortiz in an ambulance, and his father ended up confirming the information. The suspect is now in police custody.
According to multiple sources, Ortiz was shot once, with the bullet going into his back and coming out through his stomach. He was transported to a hospital in the area and underwent a six hour operation to fix his wounds. Luckily, Ortiz is in stable condition and is expected to make a full recovery. As of nighttime on 6/10/2019, Ortiz is en route to Boston, and he will then go to the Massachusetts General Hospital so that he can receive further care on his wounds.
Ortiz’s father, Leo Ortiz, stated that he is “out of danger”, but will “remain in intensive care for the next 24 hours”. Another individual and Jhoel Lopez, a television host who was with Ortiz at the time, were also injured in the shooting.
At first, some fans were fishy about the reports of Ortiz’s shooting, considering that Hector Gomez was the same journalist who has angered fans several times with false reports that he promised was true. However, many fans realized that this story was real after his family confirmed it and after MLB itself confirmed it.
Of course, because “Big Papi” is so beloved in Boston and around baseball, many messages of support and love were sent to Ortiz recently. Before the Rangers-Red Sox game, the Red Sox held a moment of silence for Ortiz which included a message on the videoboard stating “34: WE SEND OUR LOVE TO DAVID ORTIZ.”, and the fans applauded after a few seconds.
On Twitter, the reaction and support was overwhelming. Former Red Sox alumni like Travis Shaw, Pedro Martinez sent there support, as Martinez stated “I’m at peace knowing you’re out of danger”. Current Yankee Gleyber Torres sent his support, and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady sent warm regards. Along with that, dozens of MLB players, alumni, coaches, and fans sent their love out to the Red Sox slugger.
Ortiz originally was a Mariner in the minor leagues, but was traded to Minnesota in 1996. There, he would play in parts of six seasons. His career wouldn’t take off, however, until his departure to Boston in 2003. As one of the greatest designated hitters of all-time, with 541 home runs, 1700+ RBIs, and a career OPS of .931.
Much love to you, “Papi”, we love you all. We hope you recover soon.