Red Sox

Report details separate attempt to harm David Ortiz months before shooting

Report details separate attempt to harm David Ortiz months before shooting

Police have indicated the attempt on David Ortiz's life last Sunday night was part of a (somewhat) coordinated plan.

It also may not have been the first attempt to murder or harm the former Boston Red Sox slugger.

The New York Daily News' Teri Thompson and Christian Red describe an incident involving Ortiz that took place in the Dominican Republic months before Sunday's shooting, citing three sources, including one "with knowledge of the Ortiz case."

From the Daily News:

The sources claim Ortiz’s white Lexus was chased and cut off by a black Mercedes SUV before crashing in front of a firehouse. Firefighters came to his assistance, according to the sources, but an official report is not believed to have been made. The incident did not appear in the media.

It isn't clear who was involved in that attempt to run Ortiz off the road, and whether they had a connection to those involved in Ortiz's shooting last Sunday in the Dominican.

But the scope appears to be widening in the Ortiz case, as police now have indicted nine suspects involved in Sunday's shooting -- including the alleged gunman, Rolfi Ferreira-Cruz -- while a tenth suspect has turned himself in.

Reports suggest at least two of those suspects have ties to the United States; Ferreira-Cruz was indicted in New Jersey in 2017 in a robbery case, while Luis Rivas-Clase is suspected to be the same person wanted in a 2018 shooting in Reading, Pa.

Amid reports that last Sunday's attack on Ortiz may have been orchestrated from prison, a source told the Daily News: "That hit could have easily happened in the U.S."

Ortiz was still in Massachusetts General Hospital's intensive care unit as of late last week as he recovers from multiple surgeries to repair liver and kidney damage, according to his wife, Tiffany.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

Bryce Harper rooting for Mookie Betts 'to make more money than I do' in free agency

Bryce Harper rooting for Mookie Betts 'to make more money than I do' in free agency

BOSTON -- Bryce Harper was one of the earliest passengers on the Mookie Betts bandwagon, even as its namesake made him a victim of highway robbery.

The 2015 Fenway home opener featured the Nationals and their superstar 22-year-old, but Betts stole the show. He not only went 2-for-4 with a homer and two steals, he also made a leaping catch in right-center to rob Harper of a homer and then gushed about what an honor it was to share a field with him.

The two future MVPs were born only nine days apart in October of 1992, but by 2015 Harper had already established himself as a superstar, while Betts was still finding his way. "He'd be in the lineup every day if he was mine," Harper said at the time.

Fast forward just four short years, and there's no missing either of them. Harper is in the first year of a record 13-year, $330 million contract with Philadelphia, while Betts is a year away from hitting the market himself and discovering what riches it holds.

With the Phillies in town for a two-game series, that made Harper the perfect man to discuss Betts' future, because he has lived it.

"Just seeing him play through the minors and then when he got up here, he was such an electric player," Harper told NBC Sports Boston. "He's one of those guys who can change the game in an instant on both sides of the ball. He's a really good person as well off the field. Just a guy you'd want on your franchise for a long time."

The Red Sox agree, but they won't be the only team vying for his services if Betts reaches free agency. Harper faced a similar predicament with the Nationals last year, at one point reportedly declining a $300 million extension.

Whatever connection Harper felt with Washington, the team that made him the No. 1 pick in the 2010 draft, it didn't supersede his collectively bargained right to test the market.

"For myself and other players, you earn that opportunity to go there," Harper said. "You're locked in for a long period of time with one team once you get drafted, and then you have an opportunity to go and listen to other teams and see what they have to offer. It's a fun time, it's a good time to feel wanted, and Mookie is going to be wanted by a lot of teams and I think Boston is going to be one of them."

Harper rattled off a list of former teammates and executives in Washington he expects will remain lifelong friends. He has nothing but good things to say about his seven seasons there. But he also recognized that perhaps his time had run its course in ways that should make sense to Red Sox fans wondering how the team will find the money to pay Betts, MVP candidate Rafael Devers, and young outfielder Andrew Benintendi, among others.

"It was time for both sides," Harper said. "[The Nationals] have Juan Soto and Victor Robles, [Anthony] Rendon, a lot of players coming up. It was time to go somewhere else and I'm just happy I'm here and very happy I'm in Philly."

Harper's free agency experience lasted months, which is perhaps baseball's new normal. He didn't sign with the Phillies until the end of February, but he didn't sweat it, and he doesn't think Betts should either.

"I didn't mind it," he said. "Only having a couple of weeks in spring training was nice, some extra time with family and friends. But it's part of the process. It's part of what teams and players are doing now. It's going to be a long process for him, but I think he'll be able to handle that. He has a great head on his shoulders and a great family."

While Harper's contract remains the biggest ever signed by a free agent, it was in short order eclipsed as baseball's richest by Mike Trout's 12-year, $430 million extension with the Angels. Harper would love to see Betts achieve even greater financial heights.

"Just like Trout did," Harper said. "Mookie's an incredible player. If he has an opportunity to make more money than I do, then I hope he does."

Whatever Betts ultimately lands on the market, Harper still has one bone to pick. He ended up winning the MVP in 2015 after hitting .330 with 42 homers and 99 RBI. All of those numbers would've been higher, except Betts had other ideas.

"It should've been 43," Harper said with a wry smile. "So, appreciate it, Mookie."

 

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

Highlights of Red Sox' 3-2 loss to the Phillies

Highlights of Red Sox' 3-2 loss to the Phillies

FINAL SCORE: Phillies 3, Red Sox 2

IN BRIEF: The Philadelphia Phillies made three-first inning runs stand up as Aaron Nola stymied the Red Sox on four hits in seven innings in Boston's 3-2 loss at Fenway Park that halted a five-game winning streak and further damaged the Sox' faint playoff hopes. BOX SCORE

RED SOX RECORD: 67-60

HIGHLIGHTS

1st inning:
Hoskins walks, moves to third on Harper's double to left, Segura doubles to left, scoring Hoskins and Harper (2-0, PHI).

Kingery singles to left, scoring Segura (3-0, PHI). 

3rd inning:
Moreland singles to left, Bradley Jr. hits a two-run homer to right on a 0-and-0 pitch from Nola. (3-2, PHI).

UP NEXT:

Vs. Phillies, Tuesday, 7:10 p.m., NESN
Vs. Phillies, Wednesday, 7:10 p.m., NESN
Vs. Royals (completion of suspended game), Thursday, 1:05 p.m., NESN
@Padres, Friday, 10:10 p.m., NESN
@Padres, Saturday, 8:40 p.m., NESN
@Padres, Sunday, 4:10 p.m., NESN

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.