Am­bush might have caused crash

Los Angeles Times - - SPORTS - staff and wire re­ports

Au­thor­i­ties said for­mer An­gels player Luis Val­buena and win­ter league team­mate Jose Castillo, who were killed in a car crash in Venezuela, may have been the in­tended vic­tims of crim­i­nals who throw rocks onto road­ways to dis­able cars or cause crashes and then rob the ve­hi­cles’ oc­cu­pants. Four sus­pects found with Val­buena’s and Castillo’s per­sonal be­long­ings were ar­rested by po­lice, state Gov. Julio Leon Here­dia wrote Fri­day on Twit­ter.

Val­buena, Castillo and for­mer ma­jor league player Car­los Rivero were trav­el­ing from Caracas to Bar­quisimeto, where the Car­de­nales are based, when their car struck a rock and veered off the road. Rivero and the car’s driver sur­vived, but Castillo and Val­buena were ejected from the ve­hi­cle and died. Nei­ther wore a seat belt.

“We are deeply sad­dened by the tragic pass­ing of Luis Val­buena and Jose Castillo,” An­gels gen­eral man­ager Billy Ep­pler said in a state­ment. — Maria Tor­res

In a ra­dio in­ter­view, Wash­ing­ton Na­tion­als prin­ci­pal owner Mark Lerner strongly in­di­cated that Bryce Harper, con­sid­ered the top free agent in base­ball, will not re-sign with his club.

“I don’t re­ally ex­pect him to come back at this point,” Lerner told 106.7 the Fan. “I think they’ve de­cided to move on.” — Jorge Castillo

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