ST. LOUIS -- Michael Bourn didn't know Nick Adenhart well, but he saw enough of him during their time together as Team USA teammates in 2006 to know the young pitcher was something special.
"He didn't control the ball all that well, but the stuff that he had, I was like, 'Man,'" Bourn said. "And he was only 19 or 20 at the time."
Bourn and Adenhart played together three weeks in the Olympic qualifying tournament three years ago, meeting for the first time in Kissimmee, Fla., where they stayed a week, before moving onto Miami and eventually Cuba. Bourn recalled Adenhart as a "cool character," a "really down-to-earth kid."
"I didn't get to chill with him a lot, but I could tell he was going to be a really good pitcher," Bourn added.
Tragically, Adenhart and two friends died in a car accident just a few hours after he threw six scoreless innings against Oakland on Wednesday night. Major League players from coast to coast expressed shock over what happened, including Bourn, who conveyed his condolences to the Angels as well as Adenhart's family.
"That just tells you about life. You never know," Bourn said. "You think you can cheat death; when it's coming for you, it's coming. It's sad to see. I was sad to hear about it. Like Torii [Hunter] said, you just hope his family can pull through it. I mean, the kid just pitched in a game ... and not even 24 hours later, he's gone."
Alyson Footer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.