Former Pirates infielder Jose Castillo was killed in an automobile accident in his native Venezuela late Thursday night, along with free agent infielder Luis Valbuena.
Both were playing for Cardenales de Lara in the Venezuelan league.
Valbuena and Castillo were not wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash, which occurred on a road between Yaracuy and Barquisimeto, and were ejected from the vehicle, according to multiple reports.
Valbuena, an 11-year major league veteran, hit.199 with nine homers and 33 RBIs in 96 games this year for the Los Angeles Angels, who released him on August 7.
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Castillo debuted in Major League Baseball in 2004 and played four seasons for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The newspaper cites media accounts as saying the person behind the wheel was the driver for former Arizona Diamondbacks player and winter ball teammate Carlos Rivero, 30.
Valbuena was now a free agent, but he spent his last two seasons with the Los Angeles Angels. He subsequently played for the Cleveland Indians (2009-11), the Chicago Cubs (2012-14), the Astros (2015-16) and the Angels (2017-18). He left with a.226 batting average with 114 home runs and 367 career RBIs. He then split the 2008 campaign with the San Francisco Giants and Astros. He batted.254 with 39 home runs and 218 RBI during his five Major League Baseball seasons.