Major League Baseball is now mourning the loss of two its players – Yordano Ventura and Andy Marte.
Authorities in the Dominican Republic are reporting that Kansas City Royals pitcher, Yordana “Ace” Ventura, died on a highway leading to Juan Adrain, a town about 40 miles from the capital of Santo Domingo.
Ventura was signed to the Royals in 2008, but made his major league debut in 2013. The 25 year old pitched in the 2014 and 2015 World Series and helped the Royals win a championship in 2015.
Royals general manager, Dayton Moore release as statement regarding Ventura’s death:
Our prayers right now are with Yordano’s family as we mourn this young man’s passing. He was so young and so talented, full of youthful exuberance and always brought a smile to everyone he interacted with. We will get through this as an organization, but right now is a time to mourn and celebrate the life of Yordano.
In a separate accident, former major leaguer Andy Marte, 33, was killed when a car he was driving hit a house between San Francisco de Marcoris and Pimentel, about 95 miles north of Santo Domingo, according to the Associated Press.
Marte played for the Atlanta Braves, Cleveland Indians and Arizona Diamondbacks during his career.
Tony Clark, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, issued the following statement following the deaths of Marte and Royals right-hander Yordano Ventura:
Immediately following the news, tributes and condolences were offered to both families on social media. Many Royals fans brought flowers and other memorabilia in honor of Ventura.
Ventura and Marte join an unfortunate list of young players who have died in car accidents while in the Dominican Republic including Ventura’s close friend Oscar Taveras (2014), a 22 year old outfielder for the St. Louis Cardinals.