Beloved Red Sox slugger David Ortiz has been shot in the back and transported to a local hospital in his native Dominican Republic, according to a report from Dominican TV station CDN 37 and CNN Espanol.
Ortiz was “shot in the back in an incident that took place at Dial Discoheque in Santo Domingo,” Dominican National Police spokesman Felix Duran told CNN Espanol.
“They called me to tell me that David is injured and that they took him to a medical center, but they did not tell me how he is or exactly where he was transferred,” Big Papi’s father, Leo Ortiz, told ESPN.
The Red Sox had yet to comment on, or confirm the story, which broke just before 10 p.m. ET on Sunday night, as of 11 p.m.
Another report out of the Dominican indicated that Ortiz was shot “between the left side of the lower back and came out through the abdomen.”
“Please Don’t let me die, I’m a good man,” Ortiz reportedly told the emergency room doctor.
Around MLB, former players, teammates and enemies alike, voiced their support for Ortiz on social media.
‘Anxiously waiting for more news,” tweeted Alex Rodriguez, the former New York Yankee. “In the meantime, only prayers for @davidortiz, Tiffany and their family.”
Ortiz has been among the Boston’s most vocal and beloved public figures since he began his career with the Red Sox in 2003. Released by the Minnesota Twins after the 2002 season, the Sox signed him as a 27-year-old free agent and watched him flourish into a perennial MVP candidate.
The designated hitter was known as “Big Papi” as he launched 541 career home runs, 483 of them in a Red Sox uniform, while hitting .286. As good as he was in the regular season, Ortiz achieved legendary status in the postseason when he came up with key hits against Hall of Fame Yankees closer Mariano Rivera in the ALCS and led the Red Sox to a World Series in 2004, 86 years after their previous title.
In the Red Sox’ first game after the Marathon bombing in 2013, Ortiz famously grabbed the microphone at Fenway Park and said, “This is our (expletive) city.”
The Sox then went on a magical run for another title later that year.
Ortiz retired after the 26 season when he hit .315 with 38 home runs. He cried on the field, which he stayed on long after the Sox were eliminated in his final game. And he cried on the field again when his No. 34 was retired by the Red Sox in 2017.
He’s been working for the Sox in a minor front office role since his retirement.
Ortiz was also known for his work driving money to his charity, the David Ortiz Children’s Fund, which provided money to poor children for critical heart surgeries in the United States and his native Dominican Republic.