Giants expect Villalona to report to spring training


Giants expect Villalona to report to spring training

The Giants expect former top prospect Angel Villalona, who was arrested in the Dominican Republic in 2009 on a murder charge, to report to spring training on time, according to a report.Villalona, 21, had his work visa application approved by the U.S. Immigration Service, reports the San Jose Mercury News.Were nearly to the end of the process, Giants vice president of baseball operations Bobby Evans said. We participate and assist in that process, but we dont control it. Our expectation is that he will report on time.

While the application has been accepted, Villalona has not officially received final approval. However, Evans told the Mercury News that Villalona has already booked a flight back to the United States, so it's clear that he expects final approval to come soon.At the age of 16, Villalona set a franchise record for international free agents when the Giants signed him for a 2.1 million bonus on Aug. 16, 2006. Baseball America ranked Villalona, a right-handed first baseman, the Giants' top prospect prior to the 2008 season. In three career minor league seasons, the last being in 2009 with the Single-A San Jose Giants, Villalona hit .268 with 31 home runs and 144 RBIs in 254 games.Villalona was charged with the murder of 25-year-old Mario Felix de Jesus Velete in September 2009 and pleaded not guilty in December 2010, according to the court ruling of the Judicial District of La Romana. All charges were dropped after Villalona spent nearly two years both behind bars and under house arrest. Villalona also reportedly reached a settlement with the victim's family to avoid a civil suit.With his legal issues behind him, Villalona was taken off Major League Baseball's restricted list, forcing the Giants to add him to their 40-man roster in order to protect him from the Rule 5 draft. As a member of the 40-man roster, Villalona is automatically invited to spring training.
Rael Enteen is a web producer with Follow him on Twitter @RaelEnteenCSN.

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from Giants' 9-4 win over Marlins

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from Giants' 9-4 win over Marlins


SAN FRANCISCO — The main event Tuesday night in Miami was Madison Bumgarner vs. Giancarlo Stanton. After that was over, the Giants got to work. 

Carlos Moncrief, pinch-hitting for Bumgarner, sparked a three-run rally in the seventh as the Giants ran away with a 9-4 win over the Marlins. Moncrief’s RBI single tied the game and his aggressive base running led to the go-ahead run on a Stanton error. 

Here are five things to know from the second night in Miami, with an emphasis on two large gentlemen … 

—- Round 1 of Bumgarner-Stanton probably should have ended with a homer. Bumgarner started Stanton off with a cutter low, and then went way high for ball two. Another cutter nicked the inside of the plate for a strike. On 2-1, Bumgarner threw a 90 mph fastball that leaked over the heart of the plate. Stanton smoked it into left, but just for a single. 

—- Round 2 ended with Stanton homering for the 44th time this season, and sixth consecutive game. Bumgarner started the at-bat with a good curveball for a strike, but he got burned when he tried to go down in the dirt with a cutter. Buster Posey put his glove down a couple inches above the plate but the cutter never got down. Stanton crushed it 442 feet with an exit velocity of 107 mph. He watched it fly, and Bumgarner watched him run to first. 

—- Bumgarner won Round 3. Stanton fouled off a fastball and swung through a cutter on the way to 3-2. Bumgarner threw a hard curveball at Stanton’s back foot and he whiffed. 

—- Stanton, Marcell Ozuna and Christian Yelich were 6-for-6 against Bumgarner coming into the fifth. He struck them all out in order that inning. Overall, Bumgarner gave up four earned on nine hits in six innings. He struck out four. Bumgarner also had an RBI single off the wall. 

—- Mark Melancon’s stuff has taken a step up since he returned. He hit 93 mph and threw a handful of sharp curveballs while getting through the seventh against the top of Miami’s lineup.

Joe Panik joins Brandon Belt on 7-day concussion DL


Joe Panik joins Brandon Belt on 7-day concussion DL

One entire side of the Giants infield is now on the concussion disabled list.

Second baseman Joe Panik was placed on the 7-day DL Tuesday, joining first baseman Brandon Belt.

Panik took a hard tag to the face during the second game of Sunday's doubleheader against the Nationals.

The move is retoractive to August 14.

Infielder Orlando Calixte was recalled to take Panik's spot on the roster.

This is the second time in two years that Panik has landed on the disabled list with a concussion. Last July, then-Rays pitcher Matt Moore plunked Panik in the head with a pitch. It took 10 days before the Giants would place their second baseman on the DL. This time, it took just two days.