Former Boston Red Sox baseball star David Ortiz shot in the back

Former Boston Red Sox baseball star David Ortiz has been ambushed and shot in the back in his native Dominican Republic.

Ortiz, 43, was at the Dial Bar and Lounge in the capital Santo Domingo when a man climbed off a motorcycle and fired at close range from behind, the country’s national police director Ney Aldrin Bautista Almonte said.

He added that the alleged gunman was then captured and beaten by a crowd of people at the bar.

Mr Bautista said police are waiting until the man undergoes treatment for his injuries before questioning him.

Ortiz, who won the World Series with the Boston Red Sox three times before retiring in 2016, was targeted at around 8.50pm on Sunday.

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He was taken to the Abel Gonzalez clinic where he is in a stable condition after surgery, Mr Bautista said.

Ortiz’s father, Leo, told reporters outside the clinic that his son’s organs had not been damaged in the attack.

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He added that he had no idea why someone would have shot his son.

Leo said: “He is out of surgery and stable; he is resting.

“Big Papi will be around for a long time.”

Image:
Leo Ortiz gave an update about his son's condition

Mr Bautista said investigators were trying to determine whether Ortiz was the intended target.

Two other people were injured in the attack, including Dominican TV host Jhoel Lopez.

The presenter was shot in the leg and his injuries are not life-threatening, his wife Liza Blanco said.

Mr Bautista said police believe Lopez and Ortiz were injured by the same bullet.

Officers have not identified the third person or their injuries.

The Boston Red Sox said in a statement they had been notified that Ortiz sustained a gunshot wound to his “lower back/abdominal region”.

The team said they offered the Ortiz family “all available resources to aid in his recovery” and they would continue to keep them in their hearts.

Ortiz was a slugger in baseball, meaning he was a strong hitter who was often able to advance past first base.

He lives at least part of the year in the Dominican Republic, and is often seen getting his cars washed and hanging out with friends including other baseball players, artists and entertainers.

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