Dominican Republic says Ortiz shooter arrested

Santo Domingo (AFP) –


Police in the Dominican Republic said Wednesday they have arrested five people in connection with the shooting of retired baseball great David Ortiz, including a man who says he pulled the trigger.

Police chief Ney Bautista said a 25-year-old man has confessed to shooting the former Boston Red Sox star in the back last Sunday, while he was in a nightclub in Santo Domingo.

Doctors removed Ortiz's gallbladder and part of his colon and intestines, and he also sustained liver damage.

Ortiz, 43, was first treated in his native Dominican Republic and then flown to Boston Monday for a second operation.

The day of the shooting, police arrested the driver of a motorcycle on which the shooter was said to have ridden.

The motive of the shooting is not known. Nor is it known who may have ordered it.

Five other suspects are being sought, Bautista said.

Police said the shooter was offered the equivalent of about $8,000 to shoot Ortiz.

The former designated hitter and first baseman, who retired in 2016, was in the Dominican Republic for business and personal reasons.

Known affectionately as "Big Papi," he played 14 seasons for the Red Sox and made 10 All-Star appearances in his 20-year career.

Ortiz hit 541 home runs with 1,768 RBIs in 2,408 games in the majors.

Ortiz began his career by playing six seasons for the Minnesota Twins (1997-2002), but his career took off after he joined the Red Sox.

He helped Boston capture their first World Series title in 86 years in 2004, when he was the MVP of the American League Championship Series.

He also helped the Red Sox win championships in 2007 and 2013.