Minnesota Twins minor leaguer Yorman Landa was killed in a car accident in his home country of Venezuela, the Twins announced Saturday morning. The 22-year-old from Santa Teresa, Venezuela, died in the area.
Landa signed with the Twins at 16 years old, and was non-tendered ahead of the Rule 5 Draft. After electing to become a free agent, he reportedly agreed to a minor-league deal with the Twins organization just a week before the tragic incident.
His agent, Daniel Szew, released the following statement (via Ken Rosenthal):
I am devastated by the tragic news of Yorman Landa’s passing. He was not only an amazing pitcher with a very promising future but one of the most humble and sincere players I had the honor to represent. He was one of my first clients and like a little brother to me. My thoughts and condolences go out to his family, friends and fans. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers today. Be in peace mi hermanito!
Derek Falvey, Twins executive, issued this statement:
The Minnesota Twins are deeply saddened by the heartbreaking loss of Yorman Landa early this morning in Venezuela. On behalf of the entire baseball community, we send our sincerest condolences to the Landa family as well as Yorman’s many friends, coaches and teammates.
Landa, in 100 career minor league appearances (23 starts), posted a 14-13 record and a 2.66 ERA. In Class A+ Fort Myers, Landa showed a strong strikeout ability but also demonstrated control problems. He ranked 20th in MLB.com’s list of the Twins’ top 30 prospects, with the potential to become a big-league setup man. Landa touched 102 mph with his fastball at the Florida State League All-Star Game, but missed the final six weeks of the regular season with a strained lat muscle.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Landa’s family, friends, teammates, and the entire Twins’ organization.