Ramos wants to play after kidnapping
Washington Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos intends to play for his Venezuelan winter league team Wednesday, a week after he was kidnapped in his home country, CSN Washington reported Sunday, citing a family friend of the player.
Ramos was kidnapped last Wednesday at gunpoint in front of his mother's house in Valencia.
He was reunited with his family at home Saturday, hours after he was brought to safety when Venezuelan security forces overcame his captors in the northern mountain region town of Montalban, about 40 miles from where he was taken.
CSN Washington, citing a tweet from Ramos' family friend Marfa Mata, reported Sunday that the 24-year-old would make his season debut for the Aragua Tigers on Wednesday night.
In a later interview with MLB.com, Ramos said he would play only if the Nationals allowed it, but he added his preference was to take the field.
"Going back to Venezuela is a decision that the Nationals will have to make," Ramos said. "But I know from now on that the government is going to provide bodyguards for me and my family so something like this never happens again.
"Venezuela is my home, and I think the fans that have supported me and prayed for me deserve to see me play again. I have to show the appreciation for what everyone in my country has done for me."
Ramos also detailed his experience, telling MLB.com he was "super scared" throughout the ordeal.
"Even though they did not hurt me physically, it was something that was very painful," Ramos said. "I didn't think I was ever going to see my family again, and that hurt me so much. But, now, I am with them again and it feels tremendous to be back."
Six people were arrested over the kidnapping, including an older couple who Ramos said gave him food and water while he was being held.
Ramos said he thought some of the people involved were Colombian because of their accents. He also confirmed he was kidnapped for ransom.
"They wanted money, and they said they were not going to hurt me if they got their money," Ramos said. "They actually treated me well. They never hurt me. They fed me. They knew who I was and said it was not about hurting me. It was about money."