Washington Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos said he was happy and thankful to be alive after a terrifying two-day ordeal in which he was kidnapped and taken to a remote mountainous area of Venezuela.
Venezuelan police and National Guard commandos seized Ramos, 24, early Saturday morning after exchanging in heavy fire with his kidnappers. Ramos was taken at gunpoint from his home in Valencia on Nov. 9.
"I don't know who those people were. I know they're Colombians by their accent," Ramos said, the Associated Press reports. "Three guys grabbed me there in front of my house, they took me to another SUV and from there they took me into the mountains,” in central Carabobo state.
Ramos said he was physically unharmed, but added, “Psychologically, I underwent very great harm.”
Five men were arrested in the kidnapping, including a Colombian "linked to paramilitary groups and to kidnapping groups," Justice Minister El Aissami told the AP. He didn't confirm if anyone was wounded in the gunfire.
Ramos had returned to his homeland after his rookie year with the Nationals to play during the offseason in the Venezuelan league. He said he would start playing, “As soon as I feel all right.”