(SL) – Devastating news for the sports world and fans all over. It was announced mid Sunday, that Yordano Ventura was no longer with us. Gone at the tender age of 25, a car crash in the Dominican Republic took his life — just hours after an unrelated accident in the same country claimed the life of a former major leaguer.
Ventura was killed on a highway leading to the town of Juan Adrian, about 40 miles northwest of Santo Domingo. Authorities said it wasn’t clear if the Dominican Republic native was driving, but that speeding may have been a factor.
The New York Daily News reports, Ventura, a right handed flamethrower with a 100-mph fastball and a fiery temper, played his entire four-year Major League Baseball career in Kansas City after signing with the team as an amateur free agent in 2008.
He went 13-8 in 2015, when the Royals won their first championship in 30 years, and was 11-12 in 2016.
Ventura blossomed as a starter in his rookie year of 2014. His 14-10 record and 3.20 ERA earned him a five-year, $24 million contract he signed before the 2015 season.
The most memorable moment of Ventura’s career came in Game 6 of the 2014 World Series against the San Francisco Giants. The pitcher took the mound and dedicated his outing to his late friend and fellow Dominican, Oscar Taveras, the Cardinals outfielder who died in a car accident two days before the game.
Ventura is the second promising young starter to die in the last six months after 24-year-old Marlins ace Jose Fernandez was killed in September in a boating accident. Ventura also honored Fernandez during a game, adding “R.I.P. JF #16” on his cap next to his tribute for Taveras.
For his career, Ventura recorded a solid 38-31 record with a 3.89 ERA in 94 regular-season games, but he will also be remembered as a fierce competitor