Was Yordano Ventura robbed after fatal crash? His family wants answers

Big League Stew

Kansas City Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura was laid to rest Tuesday in his hometown of Las Terrenas in the Dominican Republic. The life of Ventura — cut short at the age of 25 after an auto accident early Sunday morning — was celebrated by his family, his Royals teammates and the people with whom he grew up.

The funeral, however, isn’t the end of this story. Many questions still need answers: What caused the accident? Will his estate get the rest of the money on his contract?

And another that has Ventura’s family eager for answers — was he robbed after his death?

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Reports started to surface on Dominican Republic radio Monday that people on the scene of the crash stole all of Ventura’s valuables before authorities arrived. Pedro Martinez, another native of the Dominican Republic, responded to the idea in a series of tweets. But it wasn’t until Tuesday, when Ventura’s family addressed the rumor, that it turned into something with substance.

The scene of Yordano Ventura's fatal accident. (Dominican Republic Highway Police and Military Commission, via AP)
The scene of Yordano Ventura's fatal accident. (Dominican Republic Highway Police and Military Commission, via AP)

Jacobo Mateo Moquete, a public information officer within the Dominican government, told the Kansas City Star he was aware of the rumor that Ventura had been robbed but said he “didn’t have information to establish that.” Mateo Moquete said the public was already on the scene when authorities arrived.

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One of Ventura’s most obvious valuable that hasn’t been found yet is his 2015 World Series ring. From Rustin Dodd and Maria Torres at the Kansas City Star:

The family has been unable to account for Ventura’s 2015 World Series ring, though it remains unclear whether the 25-year-old pitcher was wearing it or carrying it with him while driving from the province of San Jose de Ocoa north toward the town of Cibau.

According to a story in the Spanish-language publication Pio Deportes, a local journalist named Euri Cabral reported that Ventura “was carrying items such as cash, garments that included his World Series ring and other valuable items, which were stripped” after the crash.

Ventura’s grandfather, Raúl Hernández, made a plea for more information through the media:

“We have no sign of how it all was,” he told Pio Deportes. “We want a clarification by the National Police. We are not very clear about that, we would like it to be thoroughly investigated.”

There’s at least one troubling concern that seems to be false. The original radio rumors that were spread by Martinez insinuated that Ventura was alive after the crash and left to die by looters. But The Star, citing information that was given to the Royals, says a coroner believes Ventura died on impact.

As for the robbery? We may never know for sure.

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Mike Oz is the editor of Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at mikeozstew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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