Speaking publicly for the first time since a 2009 murder charge, Giants first base prospect Angel Villalona wouldn't elaborate on his murky past.
"I'd rather not talk about it," Villalona said through a translator Friday. "I just want to concentrate on baseball."
For the first time in four years, Villalona can do just that. He arrived at Scottsdale Stadium to restart a career that stalled in September 2009, when he was charged with murder in a barroom shooting that left 25-year-old Mario Felix de Jesus Velete dead in La Romana, Dominican Republic.
Villalona was incarcerated or on house arrest for nearly two years, but the charges ultimately were dropped. According to reports in the Dominican, Villalona settled with the victim's family, preventing a civil suit.
Villalona, 22, had intended to return to the Giants a year ago, but his visa application was denied. He had applied for a work visa that requires the applicant to be an elite athlete, and, according to the Giants, Villalona was deemed "not in what (the U.S. consulate would) view as top physical or medical conditions."
Giants' prospect Angel Villalona in camp
San Jose Mercury News | Feb 16