Pittsburgh Pirates legend died in a car accident

Jose Castillo, a former Pirate, was killed in a Venezuelan crash.

PittsbURGH (AP/KDKA) — Jose Castillo, a former player for the Pittsburgh Pirates, passed away late on Thursday night in a Venezuelan vehicle accident.

Castillo, 37, and MLB free agent Luis Valbuena, 33, are said to have perished in the car incident after it struck a rock in the road.

They were teammates in the Venezuelan winter league and participated in the game on Thursday night.

The Pirates had high hopes for Castillo, an infielder, when he joined the team in the late ’90s. He spent 10 years with the Pirates organization before going on to play for the Giants and the Astros.

Valbueno who was released by the Los Angeles Angels earlier this year.

Initial reports are the crash was caused by a “rock” in the road, a common tactic used by those trying to rob unsuspecting athletes. Earlier this year, Pirates Catcher Francisco Cervelli, talked to KDKA-TV about the growing violence in Venezuela.

“It is something that we hear every day. Of course I’m concerned. Every day is something new, every day it’s getting worse and I don’t know when it’s going to end,” he said at the time. Political unrest is common in Venezuela, leading to high rates of theft and kidnapping. Elias Diaz knows all about that. His mother was snatched and held for ransom earlier this year. “I try not to think about it, but when I got a moment, my mind is going back,” he said earlier this year.

“It is something that we hear every day. Of course I’m concerned. Every day is something new, every day it’s getting worse and I don’t know when it’s going to end,” he said at the time. Political unrest is common in Venezuela, leading to high rates of theft and kidnapping. Elias Diaz knows all about that. His mother was snatched and held for ransom earlier this year. “I try not to think about it, but when I got a moment, my mind is going back,” he said earlier this year.

Vazquez tweeted today: “What happened with Castillo and Valbuena it’s a clear example of what going on in Venezuela nobody cares bout anyone, what’s next they gonna try to find who did it not gonna find anyone!” What happened with Castillo and valbuena it’s a clear example of what going on in ???????? nobody cares bout anyone, whats next they gonna try to find who did it not gonna find anyone! Just gonna pay someone to say he did it and it’s free after a few days you’ll see!

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