May 26, 2008 / 7:19 PM / 11 years ago

Lightning kills ex-Major League Baseball player

The body of former major league baseball pitcher Geremi Gonzalez is carried out of a morgue in Maracaibo May 26, 2008. REUTERS/Isaac Urrutia

CARACAS (Reuters) - Former Major League Baseball player Geremi Gonzalez was struck by lightning and killed over the weekend at a lake in his native Venezuela, authorities said on Monday.

Gonzalez, 33, a pitcher who was signed to Japan’s Yomiuri Giants in 2007, had previously played for the Chicago Cubs, the Tampa Bay Rays, the Boston Red Sox, the New York Mets and the Milwaukee Brewers.

There were conflicting versions of what Gonzalez was doing at the time of his death on Sunday, but local emergency services told Reuters he was playing with a motorized water-bike when the lightning struck at Lake Maracaibo in his home state of Zulia in western Venezuela.

Reporting by Enrique Andres Pretel; Editing by Eric Beech

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