Nats catcher Wilson Ramos was kidnapped in Venezuela over 24 hours ago. His captors have yet to contact the Ramos family seeking a ransom and authorities are short on promising leads.
But El Universal, a Venezuelan newspaper based in Caracas, has uncovered a few more details about what exactly took place on Wednesday evening in the town of Valencia:
- Ramos signed an autograph for a young fan who had been playing stickball just before the kidnappers pulled up.
- An orange 2007 Chevrolet Captiva was the primary vehicle used in the kidnapping, but another truck was also involved. The Chevy had no plates and the windows were heavily tinted.
- Two men, with their faces uncovered, got out of the Chevy and approached Ramos. One wrapped his arm around the 24-year-old’s neck and pressed a 9mm pistol against his head.
- Ramos was with his father Abraham, his brother David, and a cousin. He was the only one taken.
As Craig noted earlier
, the odds of Ramos being released unharmed are high, especially once a ransom request is made. But a full day has passed with no signs of progress. And that’s pretty damn frightening.
Royals’ Opening Day starter Danny Duffy weathered a minor scare during Saturday’s Cactus League game against the Diamondbacks. The left-hander was removed from his final spring training start after experiencing some left shoulder tightness in the second and third innings. No lasting damage appears to have been done — Duffy told reporters that he simply felt a slight ache, nothing more — and it looks like he’ll remain on track to open the season with the team next Thursday.
The 29-year-old southpaw is coming off one of his best performances to date. Despite losing a few weeks to an oblique strain and elbow soreness, he went 9-10 in 24 starts and finished the 2017 season with a 3.81 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 over 146 1/3 innings. While Duffy entered camp with a clean bill of health, he struggled to execute against his spring training opponents and racked up 13 runs, four homers, seven walks and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings of Cactus League play.
The Royals are scheduled to kick off their home opener against the White Sox on Thursday, March 29 at 4:15 PM ET. Barring any further complications with his shoulder, Duffy will take the mound for the Royals, while James Shields is expected to make his first Opening Day appearance for the White Sox.