Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos, who was abducted in front of his home in Valencia, Venezuela, on Wednesday night, has been found safe by Venezuelan authorities, according to reports out of the country.
Ramos was kidnapped on Wednesday night, and his disappearance had touched off a tense two days as his family awaited word from Venezuelan police that the 24-year-old would return safely. At Nationals Park on Friday night, about 60 fans gathered in front of the center field gate to light candles and trade stories about the catcher.
Ramos was reportedly found in the mountains of Carabobo, the state where he was taken on Wednesday. And now, it appears his nightmarish ordeal will wrap up with a happy ending.
Stay tuned to MASNsports.com for more details as they become available.
Update: Click here for a Spanish-language YouTube video - set over achived images from the past several days in Venezuela - of Venezuelan police officials announcing that Ramos has been found safe.
When the news was announced at the Tigres de Aragua game in the Venezuelan winter league Friday night, a loud ovation went up from the fans in attendance, according to the team's Twitter feed.
Update: The Venezuelan Minister of Internal Affairs told reporters that the rescue operation, which brought Ramos back safely, also produced three detainees. And speaking to elated family members, Ramos reportedly told them over the phone, "Calm down, I'm going home."
Update: Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo just issued the following statement: "The news from Venezuela tonight is reassuring. Though details are limited and we have not yet talked directly with Wilson, we are thrilled with reports that he has been rescued and is being safely returned to his family. We greatly appreciate all the prayers and thoughts of all who have joined us in wishing for this conclusion to what has been a nightmarish 48 hours. We are eager to see Wilson and let him know just how many all over the world have been waiting for this news."
Update: Kathe Vilera, a spokesman for Ramos' winter league team, Tigres de Aragua, just tweeted this photo of Ramos back in Valencia and reunited with his family.