Ugueth Urbina Arrested for Attempted Murder in Venezuela

Major League relief pitcher Ugueth Urbina has been arrested and charged with attempted murder in Venezuela in a gruesome crime involving machettes and gasoline.

Urbina held for murder in Venezuela (AP)

CARACAS, Venezuela — Former Tigers reliever Ugueth Urbina was arrested and held Tuesday pending a charge of attempted murder. Last month, Urbina and a group of men allegedly attacked five workers with machetes and poured gasoline on them in an attempt to set them on fire. All five were injured, some with cuts and one with burns on the back and right arm, police said.

Urbina, who was detained late Monday, has insisted he had nothing to do with the violence at his family’s ranch Oct. 16. “Everything will be cleared up soon and people will know the truth,” Urbina said from his cell at a police station. Urbina’s lawyer said the pitcher surprised the workers by showing up at the ranch that night while they were bathing in the pool without permission. He said Urbina spoke sharply to them, but later left and went to sleep.

Urbina, 31, has a 44-49 record with 237 saves and a 3.45 ERA in 11 seasons. He pitched for the Tigers in 2004-05, before being traded to Philadelphia for Placido Polanco. He became a free agent after the season.

A horrific crime. One hopes Urbina is innocennt of the charges.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. I’ll give you a hint, it starts with a machete attack, and ends with you getting doused with gasoline and set aflame. While Urbina was once known for his blazing fastball, he’s now in trouble for his blazing farm workers. You can find the full story here, but as his workmen can attest, if you think you’re hot before the swim, once Uggie catches you you’ll feel like Johnny Storm. [IMG ugueth] Vladdy’s Been Nibbling on His Golden Glove? Vladimir Guerrero: Phenomenal talent, five tools, best plate

  2. Former Florida Marlin Urgeth Urbina arrested for attempted murder

    Urbina’s story reminds me of the case of another MLB pitcher and Venezuela native, Julio Machado. In 1991 Machado murdered a woman in Venezuela after a traffic accident. He was subsequently found guilty and sentenced to 12 years in prison.