Matt Pobereyko was a baseball pitcher and a prospect in the New York Mets minor league system, who then began playing ball in Mexico in the Mexican Pacific Winter League. He died on Friday of a heart attack while in his Chicago-area apartment.
His brother, Daniel Pobereyko, confirmed his passing in a statement to NBC News: “He just dropped, and that’s all we know,. We don’t know. There’s nothing outstanding on the autopsy. But from what I understand, he would have gotten a clean bill of health if he had a pulse.” Continuing, Daniel said “For what we know now, there’s really no leads. They saw him earlier in the week, and he seemed to be perfectly fine.”
Warrenville Police Chief Sam Bonilla confirmed that in a statement, saying that found police found Pobereyko “unresponsive on his kitchen floor” and “pronounced dead on the scene.” He added, “There were no suspicious circumstances to report, and an autopsy conducted the following day did not reveal anything further.”
His current team in Mexico, the Saraperos de Saltillo, tweeted about his passing, saying (this is the translated version of the tweet) “We report the unfortunate news of the death of Matt Pobereyko, due to a heart attack that ended his life. Matt had a great winter where he was listed as the punch king. Directive, staff, coaching staff and players unite for his eternal rest.”
Informamos la lamentable noticia del fallecimiento de Matt Pobereyko, debido a un infarto que termino con su vida.
Matt tuvo excelente invierno donde figuró como el rey del ponche.
Directiva, personal, cuerpo técnico y jugadores nos unimos por su eterno descanso.
— Saraperos de Saltillo (@ClubSaraperos) February 25, 2023
Additionally, on Sunday the league he played in, Liga Mexicana del Pacifico, tweeted about him. As NBC Chicago reports, the team posted “a photo from Kuroda Park in Guasave, home to his former team, Algodoneros de Guasave. The team had placed a wreath and the number 56 in chalk at the pitchers mound.”
— Liga ARCO Mexicana del Pacífico (@Liga_Arco) February 26, 2023
Also commenting on his death was his former team, The St. Paul Saints. That team tweeted about his passing, saying “It is with a heavy heart that we learned of the passing of former Saints pitcher (’20) Matt Pobereyko. He was an incredible teammate and fierce competitor, but an even nicer person. He will be missed by all that knew him. We send our love to his family and friends.”
It is with a heavy heart that we learned of the passing of former Saints pitcher ('20) Matt Pobereyko. He was an incredible teammate and fierce competitor, but an even nicer person. He will be missed by all that knew him. We send our love to his family and friends. pic.twitter.com/JbRwh1oAws
— St. Paul Saints (@StPaulSaints) February 26, 2023
Sioux City Explorers manager Steve Montgomery gave a statement as well, saying “Words cannot express the grief and sorrow we feel today for Matt’s family, friends, teammates and his fans. He truly loved being an Explorer and being a part of this community. He was as fierce of a friend as he was as a competitor. We will miss him as a baseball player, but even more so as a friend.”
NBC News, adding a few more details on Pobereyko’s career in the minor league and Mexican league, said:
Pobereyko, a native of Hammond, Indiana, played for Kentucky Wesleyan University before he embarked on a minor league career that included stops with the New York Mets, the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Miami Marlins organizations.
He made it as high as the Mets Triple-A team in Las Vegas in 2018.
In recent years, most of Pobereyko’s work had come in independent and Mexican leagues.
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