Mariners prospect Victor Sanchez died Saturday due to complications from injuries he suffered in a boating accident last month in Carupano, Venezuela. A 20-year-old native of Rio Chico, Miranda, Venezuela, Sanchez played three seasons in the Seattle organization with the A Everett AquaSox, A Clinton LumberKings and AA Jackson Generals. Rafa Nieves, Sanchez’s agent, confirmed his client’s death to MLB.com.
“The Seattle Mariners are saddened to learn of the passing of Victor Sanchez,” general manager Jack Zduriencik said in a statement issued by the club. “Victor was a tremendous young man and a wonderful teammate. He was a very talented player who was close to fulfilling his promise as a major leaguer. He will be missed by his teammates, the coaches and the Mariners.”
Sanchez was seriously injured Feb. 14 when his head struck a boat propeller while swimming in Venezuela. He was placed in intensive care with a fractured skull and a hematoma, which caused a stroke. Sanchez then went into a coma. Sanchez was reportedly showing signs of brain activity last month in his attempt to recover. Doctors performed surgery on his brain, but he remained unconscious.
A right hander, Sanchez made 23 starts in 2014 for AA Jackson. He went 7-6 with a 4.19 ERA and 97 strikeouts in 124.2 innings. In three seasons, Sanchez went 19-14 with a 3.43 ERA in 323 innings. He struck out 245 with a 1.18 WHIP.
Sanchez signed with the Mariners as a non-drafted free agent July 12, 2011 through the efforts of Seattle scouts Bob Engle, Emilio Carrasquel and Luis Martinez.