Home > Sport > Baseball legend David Ortiz opens up on recovery following shooting

Baseball legend David Ortiz opens up on recovery following shooting

Baseball star David Ortiz has admitted that he started “losing hope” after being shot in his native Dominican Republic in June.

The former Boston Red Sox and Minnesota Twins hitter – known as Big Papi – underwent three surgeries as a result of the gunshot wound he suffered.

And Ortiz said he started to fear the worst by the time the third operation took place after doctors discovered complications from the injury.

“I thought I wasn’t going to be able to be who I am right now and go back to normal, you know?” he told MLB.com .

“At some point, I started losing hope,”

In the hours following the incident on June 9, he had an operation to repair damage to his intestines and liver, which also resulted in his gallbladder being removed.

Ortiz retired in 2016 (Image: Getty Images)

Despite undergoing a second surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital to check that the first had been done correctly, the 43-year-old did not see improvements in his condition as he continued to require a feeding tube.

And it was soon determined that the former Red Sox slugger would require a third procedure.

“They discovered that this bullet gave me a bacteria that they had never seen before,” Ortiz continued.

“They had this team, antibacteria team. They were really on me, hard, because they want to get this out of my body.

“The reality is that they did, but they fought with it.

Ortiz at Fenway park on September 9 (Image: CJ GUNTHER/EPA-EFE/REX)

“The reason why they went in the third time is because the bacteria had my intestine all kinked. It wasn’t able to function.”

Unlike with the first two surgeries, Ortiz said was able to fully appreciate what was happening and admitted he began to worry about his quality of life after the operation.

“Now I know what I’m dealing with,” Ortiz said. “Now I know where I got damaged and I know that those parts weren’t working the way the doctor expects.

“They started talking about a third surgery. Then, when I was hearing all that, you get scared because you don’t know if you’re going to be able to survive.

David Ortiz celebrates after scoring against the St. Louis Cardinals in 2013 World Series (Image: Getty Images)

“But then I survived, and my next thing to worry about was, ‘What am I going to be like after everything?’ That’s when you really start worrying about things.”

Despite fears over his ability to return to normal food, Ortiz also said he started eating solids again in late July – after he was discharged.

When asked about the incident on June 9, Ortiz said it is something that will stick with him.

“It’s something that I will not forget about,” he said.

“I wasn’t hurting (at first). I felt like a little burn, but I don’t even look at that. I know that I was hurting because of the impact and the sound.

Ortiz chats with ex-teammate Manny Ramirez (Image: Reuters)

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“I started hurting later, probably when I was about to walk into the surgery.”

Although Dominican authorities have offered several explanations for the shooting, including that Ortiz was not the intended target, he doesn’t have a conclusive answer and has reportedly hired former Boston Police Department commissioner Ed Davis to investigate further.

“There were so many rumors out there,” he added. “But like I told them, the Dominican is a country that social media informs you somehow, some way, because there is no consequence.

“There are people that … come out there with some things that aren’t true, just because they want to get followed or get some likes.

“There are a lot of rumors, a lot of bad things came out, but none of them were related to what really happened to me.”

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/613210655537900