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Former Cubs prospect Jeff Goldbach killed in North Carolina

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The catcher was the Cubs’ 2nd-round pick in 1998.

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

We have some sad news to pass along. Former Cubs minor league catcher Jeff Goldbach was shot and killed last Sunday in Greensboro, North Carolina. Goldbach was 41 years old and was the single father of three children. A neighbor has been arrested in connection to the slaying.

The Cubs selected Goldbach out of high school in Princeton, Indiana in the second round in 1998. He was a member of the 1999 Lansing Lugnuts, a team that caused a lot of excitement and regular updates by Steve Stone on Cubs TV broadcasts that year. Goldbach was one of several prospects on those Lugnuts including Carlos Zambrano, Corey Patterson, Hee-Seop Choi, Michael Wuertz and David Kelton. Goldbach had his best season in organized ball that year, hitting .271/.377/.489 with 18 home runs and 72 RBI in 112 games.

Goldbach’s career stalled out after 1999. He spent the next three seasons in High-A Daytona and managed only 32 games in Double-A before the Cubs released him in in 2002. After spending part of the 2003 in the Rangers system, he played four years in independent ball before retiring after the 2006 season.

A GoFundMe page has been set up for his three children.

We send out our sincere condolences to Goldbach’s family and friends.