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Young: Ventura's death 'will bring us closer'

Royals right-hander shared 'mutual respect' with teammate, saw softer side of personality
MLB.com @FlannyMLB

KANSAS CITY -- Royals right-hander Chris Young believes his teammates are the most tight-knit group he has ever been around.

And Young also believes that the loss of teammate Yordano Ventura will bring the group even closer.

KANSAS CITY -- Royals right-hander Chris Young believes his teammates are the most tight-knit group he has ever been around.

And Young also believes that the loss of teammate Yordano Ventura will bring the group even closer.

In loving memory: Yordano Ventura tribute

Ventura, 25, died in a car accident early Sunday morning in the Dominican Republic.

:: Yordano Ventura, 1991-2017 | Andy Marte, 1983-2017 ::

"You hate to say that tragedy brings us all together, but I think it does," Young told MLB.com by phone. "I think it will bring us closer.

"This group of guys is truly remarkable. We all truly care about each other. We have a unique bond. And I think we're seeing that now as we mourn the loss of one of our brothers."

Young said he had a special relationship with Ventura.

"There was this mutual respect," Young said. "I think the public perception of Yordano was that he was this wild and crazy kid. But he had a very soft and kind personality. I saw that.

"I remember when I signed with the Royals in the spring of 2015. I had my first bullpen session, and it was right after Yordano threw his. I went back in the clubhouse, and he was there waiting for me. He wanted some advice.

"I remember thinking to myself, 'Wow, this kid gets it.' And ever since then, we really had a special relationship. It just doesn't seem possible that he's gone."

Young said he will remember Ventura as an immense talent with a big heart.

"This was a young man with so much in front of him," Young said. "He had so much talent that he hadn't even realized yet. It just doesn't seem possible that he won't be able to enjoy all of that.

"I will remember him for his personality, too. He was polite and respectful. He was a fun-loving guy until he stepped on that mound, and then it was all about winning. You never questioned his desire to win. And that's all you can ask for in a teammate."

Jeffrey Flanagan has covered the Royals since 1991, and for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter @FlannyMLB.

Kansas City Royals, Yordano Ventura, Chris Young