The San Francisco Giants are right in the middle of the NL wild card chase heading into the season’s last two weeks, but one guy who apparently won’t ever help get them into the playoffs is Angel Villalona. The 19-year-old Dominican prospect was one of the top players in the Giants system, and received a then club-record $2.1 million bonus when he signed with the team as a 16-year-old in 2006.
Now, it’s being reported that Villalona is suspected of killing a man at a bar in the Dominican Republic last night. He turned himself into police today, and could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted (that’s the maximum?). Villalona played this season for the San Jose Giants, but was injured and not with the team when they won the California League championship last night.
MLB.COM has some of the details, which are still sketchy because the story is still developing:
A police spokesman in La Romana, in the east region of the Dominican Republic, told the AP that Villalona, 19, is the prime suspect in the shooting death of 25-year-old Mario Felix de Jesus Velete.
“The incident occurred Saturday at around 11 at night, and the main suspect is Angel Villalona”, said Adrian Urbaez of the Dominican National Police.
Villalona turned himself in to local authorities on Sunday afternoon.
“We know there was an incident and that there is one person dead, but we don’t have the details of the case”, said Frank Micheli, president of the Azucareros del Este team in the Dominican Winter League. Villalona is affiliated with the Azucareros for winter baseball.
Villalona hasn’t played since July because of a quad injury. MLB.COM said he was listed as #48 in their list of the top 50 prospects in baseball, and he was the Arizona Rookie League’s top player in 2007.
Despite this, Villalona’s signing is still looking better than that ridiculous Barry Zito deal.