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There is still a lot that’s unknown about the accident that killed Ventura, 25, but a few things have been discovered or theorized:
• Authorities in the Dominican Republic said Monday they hadn’t submitted the accident report yet, according to the Associated Press, but they think speed may have been the cause of the accident. However, Angela Martinez, the mother of Ventura’s daughter, said he was often cautious not to speed, because of the accident that killed his friend, fellow MLB player and countryman Oscar Tavares.
• Ventura was driving through a thick fog about three hours southwest of his hometown of Las Terrenas, according to Rustin Dodd of the Kansas City Star. This is what authorities believe happened: Ventura lost control of the car after his tires went off the road, and the vehicle rolled over. Ventura was not wearing a seatbelt and was thrown from the car.
• There was no alcohol present at the scene, according to The Star. A toxicology report will take three weeks, so we won’t find out until then if alcohol or another substance was a factor in the crash.
Driving in the Dominican Republic is hazardous enough on its own. In its last global report on road safety in 2013, the country is ranked first in motor vehicle deaths per capita. The rate of deadly accidents there is 30 deaths per 100,000 people, according to the AP.
It’s a troubling problem, and one that the Royals themselves hadn’t ignored prior to this accident. Here’s what GM Dayton Moore said about that to the Kansas City Star.
“We’re always (cautioning our players),” Moore said. “And I’m more intentional about it, to the point where it’s probably maybe even goes in one ear and out the other. But we’re constantly saying things.”
In the end, there’s only so much that teams can do to prevent accidents like this. But Royals Review noticed a disturbing trend: Ventura is the fifth Dominican baseball player to lose his life in an automobile accident in the past year.
Orioles minor leaguer Ramon Ramirez, Yankees minor leaguer Sandy Acevedo, and Astros minor leaguer Jose Rosario have all had their lives claimed recently.
The fourth is Andy Marte, who died in a separate car accident just hours before Ventura did. And those five don’t include Taveras, the Cardinals outfielder whose deadly car accident was in 2014.
The Stew’s Mike Oz contributed to this post.
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