Former Major League Baseball players Luis Valbuena and Jose Castillo were killed in a car accident Thursday night, a spokesperson for their Venezuelan team, Cardenales de Lara, confirmed.
Valbuena was 33.
Castillo was 37.
We are saddened by the tragic news that Luis Valbuena and former major leaguer José Castillo have died in a car accident. pic.twitter.com/C3nILO00SE
— MLB (@MLB) December 7, 2018
The crash occurred after Valbuena and Castillo left the University Stadium at Caracas after playing a game in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. Venezuelan authorities said their car went to the opposite side of the road while trying to avoid a sliding rock.
Astros statement on deaths of Valbuena and Castillo: pic.twitter.com/UWayQURl7f
— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) December 7, 2018
The players were en route to the city of Barquisimeto, where they were planning to play against Bravos de Margarita on Friday.
Per this report, Luis Valbuena and José Castillo’s car collided with a rock that rolled onto the road. The car was being driven by the driver for former D-Backs player and winter ball teammate Carlos Rivero. https://t.co/l9oKtbAybP
— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) December 7, 2018
Valbuena played 11 seasons in the majors, including his final two with the Los Angeles Angels, who released him in August. He also played with the Seattle Mariners, Cleveland Indians, Chicago Cubs and Houston Astros.
Castillo played in the majors from 2004 to 2008, with the Pittsburgh Pirates, San Francisco Giants and Astros.
Woke up to the news of Luis Valbuena and Jose Castillo passing away. That’s really sad. Hope heaven is ready for some bat flips 😥pic.twitter.com/QdnlrpVHxc
— The Astro Joker 🃏 (@theastrojoker) December 7, 2018