Ex-ma­jor lea­guers Val­buena, Castillo killed in car crash

San Francisco Chronicle Late Edition - - SPORTS -

For­mer ma­jor lea­guers Luis Val­buena and Jose Castillo were killed in a car crash in Venezuela caused by high­way ban­dits who then robbed them, of­fi­cials said Fri­day.

Val­buena, 33, and Castillo, 37, died late Thurs­day when their SUV crashed as it tried to veer around an ob­ject on the road, Yaracuy state Gov. Julio Leon Here­dia said on his Twit­ter ac­count. Of­fi­cials said some ban­dits place or throw ob­jects on high­ways to force ve­hi­cles to stop or crash so they can rob the oc­cu­pants.

Here­dia said four peo­ple have been de­tained after be­ing found with prop­erty of the ath­letes.

Castillo, who played for the Gi­ants in 2008, and Val­buena were team­mates on the Car­de­nales de Lara team in the Venezue­lan win­ter league and were re­turn­ing from a game in the cap­i­tal when the crash oc­curred en route to the city of Bar­quisimeto.

Third base­man Car­los Rivero was in the car and sur­vived, ac­cord­ing to the web­site beis­bol­play.

Val­buena, an 11-year ma­jor lea­guer, hit .199 with nine homers and 33 RBIs in 96 games this year for the Los An­ge­les An­gels, who re­leased him Aug. 7.

Val­buena hit .226 with 114 home runs over from 2008-18 in stints with the Seat­tle, Cleve­land, the Chicago Cubs, Hous­ton and the An­gels.

“I will miss Luis’ ban­ter, smile, gen­uine love for his team­mates, and, of course, the bat flips,” Astros man­ager AJ Hinch said. “He was a beloved per­son whether he was on our team or across the field.”

Castillo played in the ma­jors from 2004-08 with Pitts­burgh, the Gi­ants and Hous­ton. He had a .254 av­er­age with 39 home runs. Briefly: For­mer An­gels righthander Gar­rett Richards signed a two-year, $15.5 mil­lion deal with the Padres . ... Right-han­der Mer­rill Kelly, who has pitched in Korea for the past four sea­sons, agreed to a twoyear, $5.5 mil­lion con­tract with the Di­a­mond­backs . ... For­mer Gi­ants out­fielder Jar­rett Parker re­port­edly agreed to a mi­nor­league deal with the An­gels.

Luis Val­buena

Jose Castillo

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.