Former Red Sox Player David Ortiz Shot in Dominican Republic



Former Red Sox Player, David “Big Papi” Ortiz was shot in the Dominican Republic on Sunday, June 9.

Elle Cavanaugh, Contributing Writer

On Sunday (June 9) night around 8:50 p.m., one of Boston’s most loved Red Sox players, David “Big Papi” Ortiz was shot in his home country, the Dominican Republic. Ortiz, though injured, is currently stable and recovering in Boston after surgeries in both the DR and Boston.

While attending Dial Bar and Lounge with Jhoel López, a local television host and a friend of Ortiz, a shooter jumped off of a motorcycle and shot Ortiz in the back. The bullet penetrated his body and departed through his abdomen. The bullet fortunately missed his major organs, but in surgery, his doctors had to remove parts of Ortiz’s intestines, colon, and gallbladder; the attack also harmed his liver. After exiting the body, the same bullet also hit López’s leg, but López checked out of the hospital Monday after being treated.

After a six hour surgery Monday in the DR, the Red Sox sent Ortiz to Boston on an air ambulance. On Tuesday, Ortiz underwent another surgery, this time an exploratory one. He is currently recovering in the intensive care unit of Massachusetts General Hospital.

Meanwhile, back in the DR, the police and authorities are working hard to catch the shooter and any accomplices. On Wednesday, the DR’s top prosecutor reported that they currently have Rolfi Ferreira Cruz, Joel Rodríguez Cruz, Porfirio Ayendi Dechamps Vásquez, Reynaldo Rodríguez Valenzuela, and Oliver Moisés Mirabal in custody.

Ferreira Cruz has already confessed to shooting Ortiz, but on Friday he claimed that he was trying to shoot someone else. According to Ferreira Cruz, he was hired to kill someone who resembled Ortiz; however, the authorities revealed that Ferreira Cruz originally claimed that he did in fact aim for Ortiz and is probably trying to save himself from the wrath of Ortiz fans in prison.

Eddy Féliz García was driving the motorcycle the shooter jumped from; he was immediately detained on Sunday after the crowd beat him as he tried to escape the scene. According to his lawyer, García was only a motorcycle taxi driver and had no idea what would happen to Ortiz as a result of his passenger’s actions.

On Thursday, three more suspects were taken into custody, but another suspect, Luis Alfredo Clase, has yet to be taken in.

As of now, the police lack knowledge on any motives for the shooting, but they do know that 400,000 Dominican pesos (about $7,800) were paid to the men involved in the attack of Ortiz.

Back in Massachusetts, fans are greatly disheartened by the reality of anyone causing harm to the former Red Sox player who led the team out of the 86 year World Series drought. At Hingham High, the melancholy feelings are no different.  Freshman Morgan Hurley commented, “David Ortiz is such a legend in Boston, and I know he loves our city so much…so it really was sad to hear that his life was almost taken in his home country.”

Freshman Bobby Falvey agreed, “It was tough news to take in. The thought of a childhood hero dying was scary. He’s done so much for the city of Boston, especially after the Boston [Marathon] bombings…he is such a big part of the Boston community and of sports.” He then added, “He’s an icon.”

As Ortiz recovers in Boston, fans worry for him, but are ecstatic to hear that he will be alright. Through all of this distress and concern, it is calming to know that Ortiz is fixed safely at Mass. Gen. Hospital in Boston, the home of the beloved Big Papi.