Entries in Wilson Ramos (3)


Wilson Ramos: Inside Kidnapped MLB Player's Rescue

G Fiume/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Washington Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos, who was abducted earlier this week in Venezuela, said he huddled under his bed fearing for his life as government commandos arrived to rescue him.

"I didn't know if I was coming home alive," Ramos told ESPN in an exclusive interview.

Ramos is a free man after officials found him alive and safe and rescued him in an air raid.

The commandos had flown into a remote, mountainous location of Venezuela by helicopter and then set out on foot, before surrounding a house holding Ramos.

"These were people I don't know and they kill for money... to think about this made my spirits go down and I was worried," Ramos told ESPN. "I do not wish that experience upon anyone."

When the shooting ended, at least four kidnappers and their accomplices were arrested.

Ramos was held for roughly 50 hours after being abducted from his mother's house at gunpoint.

"I have to be more careful on the streets... I will continue working hard on my career," he said.

After he was rescued, Ramos' mother was shown on television exclaiming, "Thanks to God!"

Earlier on Friday night, fans of the Washington Nationals held a candlelight vigil for Ramos outside of their stadium.

Ramos thanked his fans for their support.

"Thank you for everything and I [will] see you in spring training."

Ramos is a rising star with the Washington Nationals, whose fielding and power hitting propelled him into the role of starting catcher in only his rookie season.

In 2011 he hit .267 with 15 home runs and 52 RBI in 113 games. He also threw out 19 of 67 runners attempting to steal a base, a 28 percent success rate.

Ramos may be the highest profile symbol of the growing, and some say epidemic, problem of kidnapping for ransom in Venezuela. Hundreds of such abductions occur each year.

According to ESPN, since 2004 at least three major league players from Venezuela have had relatives kidnapped.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Car Used to Kidnap Wilson Ramos Found, Police Say

G Fiume/Getty Images(CARACAS, Venezuela) -- Police say they have found the car used by armed men to kidnap Washington Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos from his home near Caracas, Venezuela.

Ramos, 24, was abducted and taken away Wednesday evening in an SUV by four men in Santa Ines, in central Carabobo.

Justice Minister Tareck El Aissami told reporters Thursday the vehicle was found abandoned in a nearby town.

Major League Baseball and the Washington Nationals issued a joint statement Thursday, saying, "Our foremost concern is with Wilson Ramos and his family and our thoughts are with them at this time. Major League Baseball's Department of Investigations is working with the appropriate authorities on this matter. Both Major League Baseball and the Washington Nationals have been instructed to make no further comment."

U.S. State Department deputy spokesman Mark Toner said they have not been in touch with the family or with Major League Baseball, but said, "we stand by to help in whatever way possible the family, if they contact us."

"It's obviously of great concern to us," Toner said. "We condemn these kinds of violent acts."

Ramos is considered a major up-and-coming young player in the league. In 2011 as a rookie he hit .267 with 15 home runs and 52 RBIs in 113 games. He also threw out 19 of 67 runners attempting to steal a base, a 28 percent success rate.

Venezuela is home to a dozen major league baseball players. Families of wealthy athletes in the country have been targeted in the past by kidnappers hoping to gain a quick and hefty ransom. In 2009 the 56-year-old mother of retired player Victor Zambrano was rescued after a three-day kidnapping ordeal.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


MLB Player Kidnapped in Venezuela: Report

G Fiume/Getty Images(VALENCIA, Venezuela) -- Washington Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos was kidnapped from his home in Valencia, Venezuela Wednesday afternoon, according to his Venezuela Winter League team, Tigres de Aragua.

Ramos' family confirmed a report from El Nacional that said the 24-year-old was kidnapped by four gunmen from his home in Valencia, according to the Washington Times. The family told the Times they had not heard from the suspects by 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Ramos hit .267 with 15 home runs and 52 RBI in his first full season in the majors in 2011.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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