United States

David Ortiz Recovering After 3rd Surgery for Complications From Gunshot Wound

The former Red Sox slugger's wife said he is in good spirits

What to Know

  • David Ortiz's wife revealed in a statement Thursday that the former Red Sox slugger underwent a third surgery earlier this week.
  • Ortiz was shot on June 9 in the Dominican Republic in what authorities have said was a case of mistaken identity.
  • Doctors had previously removed Ortiz's gallbladder and part of his intestines in the Dominican prior to flying him to Boston for treatment.

Former Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz underwent a third surgery this week for complications from a gunshot wound suffered last month, his wife said Thursday.

"Earlier this week, David underwent a third surgery for complications resulting from his gunshot wound," Tiffany Ortiz said in a statement issued by the team. "The operation was performed by Dr. David King at Massachusetts General Hospital. David is recovering well and is in good spirits."

"We continue to be incredibly appreciative of the kindness and compassion shown to David and to our entire family during this difficult time," she added.

Ortiz was shot at a bar in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic on June 9. Surveillance footage of the scene showed a gunman walking toward Ortiz and shooting him at close range. Dominican officials said the shooting was a case of mistaken identity and he was not the intended target.

Doctors removed Ortiz's gallbladder and part of his intestines prior to flying him to Boston for further treatment.

Dominican authorities said Victor Hugo Gomez Vasquez, an associate of Mexico's Gulf Cartel, ordered the hit from the U.S., hiring a gang of killers to eliminate his cousin, whom he suspected of turning him in to Dominican drug investigators in 2011.

The cousin, Sixto David Fernández, was seated with Ortiz at the Dial Bar and Lounge on the night of the shooting. Fernández owned an auto-repair shop and is friends with Ortiz, officials said.

Within days of the shooting, authorities had detained more than a dozen suspects, ranging from the alleged gunman to a series of drivers and minor accomplices. All of them have been ordered to spend one year in preventive prison as the investigation continues. Gomez Vasquez, the alleged mastermind, was arrested on June 28.

Dominican police said Gomez Vasquez offered to pay $30,000 for the shooting.

Police are still looking for at least three other suspects: a woman known as The Venezuelan or Red; Luis Alfredo Rivas Clase, aka The Surgeon, who is wanted for a 2018 shooting in Reading, Pennsylvania, and was believed to be driving a car used to stalk Fernández; and Alberto Miguel Rodríguez Mota, whom authorities believe paid the hit men.

Ortiz, 43, led the Red Sox to three World Series championships, was a 10-time All Star and hit 541 home runs. The Red Sox retired his number, 34, in 2017, and he has a bridge and a stretch of road outside Fenway Park named after him. He has a home in Weston, on the outskirts of Boston, that he shared with his wife and three children before putting it up for sale.

Although he lives in Boston, Ortiz visits the Dominican Republic several times a year. His father and sister live in Santo Domingo.

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