Phillies Prospect #74: Jesus Villegas Andino

Jesus Villegas Andino is lacking in some tools - mainly offense - but if he can find a way to get on base, the shortstop could find himself sticking around and moving up.

Acquired: Drafted by the Phillies in the 14th round of the 2007 Draft.

B: R  T: R  /  Height: 5', 10"  /  Weight: 175  /  Born: 9/21/1986

2007 Team/League: Gulf Coast League Phillies

Positions Played in 2007:   SS 32 games

School: Porterville College

Batting and Power:  The biggest question mark about Jesus Villegas Andino is his offense. Most scouts believe that he simply won't be able to hit in professional baseball and he certainly struggled through his first season, hitting below the Mendoza Line. As for power, it's simply non-existent and isn't part of Villegas Andino's game.

Baserunning and Speed: One area that the scouts do like about Villegas Andino is his speed. If - and that's a big if - he can find a way to get on base, he can use his speed well, but will need a little work in the art of stealing bases, since he was successful only at about a 40% clip in college. He often gets a little too aggressive and will become impatient if a pitcher works to keep him close and will wind up running himself into trouble. Since the raw speed is there, the rest is all coachable.

Defense: This is the part of the game where Villegas Andino drew the most attention. He's got great hands and uses his speed and natural instincts to put himself in position to make plays. His arm is above average and he can turn some very difficult plays into routine looking plays with his acrobatic style. He doesn't try to get too fancy or do too much and can be counted on to make routine plays, unlike some flashy shortstops who will make a great play and follow it up by booting a routine ground ball. Of course, the one part of his game that could always be counted on fell apart in 2007 when he made 12 errors in pro ball. Most likely those errors were the because of jitters and simply not concentrating, but he'll have to show them to be a fluke if he's to turn things around in 2008.

Projection: It's all about the bat. If Villegas Andino can hit at all, he could at least find himself hanging around because of his defense. If he continues to settle around the Mendoza Line, it's simply not going to be enough to get him anywhere. He'll need to hit in the .250 range to have any sort of a shot and will likely need to show the ability to play at least one other position, which he should easily be able to do, to add to his versatility. Should he somehow figure out how to hit, then the sky will be the limit for this kid. He'll be back in short-season ball in 2008, most likely returning to the Gulf Coast League to try to figure things out.

Jesus Villegas Andino's career stats

'07 Gulf Coast 0 8 .184 32 98 9 18 4 2 3 6 18 .275 .269

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