Well, here’s something interesting: MLBTR passes along news out of Honduras that pitcher– or “launcher,” if you believe Google Translate– Denis Villatoro has decided to sign with the Blue Jays, over a number of interested clubs.

The news comes from Saúl Carranza of Diez, who reports that the 18-year-old has signed a five-year deal.

Through Google Translate, he explains (his bold):

The pitcher yesterday visited the newsroom of TEN to recount his incredible experience. ”My story is very strange, I was not a pitcher, third base was, coincidentally one day I saw a talent scout from another team because I have a good arm. It was mine, but then I started throwing,” he says.

Now his pitches travel a speed of 93 miles per hour, enough to convince anyone and was so big teams like the Baltimore Orioles, Yankees, Mets, Houston, San Francisco and Pirates were interested in him.

Villatoro was last week in the Dominican Republic to undergo test launches. The talent scout saw the potential of Honduran promise and did not hesitate to place Toronto. Villatoro go far and there’s no doubt.

Villatoro “was the star pitcher of the ‘hawks’ of the Honduran Air Force, Major League Baseball Tegucigalpa, until a ‘scout’ Blue Jays team, discovered,” explains La Tribuna, also via Google Translate.

Aaaand… that’s about all I’ve been able to learn so far, save for the fact that Honduran newspaper websites use really small pictures. 436 pixels? Come on, Honduras!

You can find Villatoro on Twitter at @DAlexVillatoro. He’s obviously a long, long way from being anything, and the fact that most of us– myself included– hadn’t heard of him before today doesn’t suggest that this is some kind of massive prospect score, but adding big arms to the low minors can’t possibly be a bad thing– especially if you’re beating out so many suitors to do so, right?

Update – 6:30 PM:

Here we have a couple of tweets worth digesting, but that I didn’t think– especially in light of what they’re telling us– warranted writing up a whole second Denis Villatoro post.



Image via Diez.hn.

Comments (35)

  1. “Test launches”. So the kid has a rocket for an arm. I like it.

    • … any word on which launch site he will be positioned? … hope he’s using regular fuel, unlike the last Rocket we had

  2. A 5 year deal? I guess Hondurans are treated similarly to Cubans, rather than Dominicans and Venezualans and being subject to the spending cap?

    • Thats what I was thinking…how come he’s not under the same Int Draft thing that those other countries are now? Should the Jays be looking in the Aussie outback too?

      • Unless I missed some radical change, only Americans, Canadians and Puerto Ricans are eligible for the draft, unless you play NCAA ball.

    • I’m wondering if the “5-year deal” was lost in translation somewhere.

  3. Sounds like another promising international signing. Best of luck to him I guess.

    Thought I saw something about the Jays re-acquiring Adam Lowen too… Did anyone else see that?

    • Yeah, that’s a thing.

      • Well…. good for him too then.

        • Noticed Loewen’s name on the World Baseball Champ. roster. It’s showing him on the Mets. in the Star article.

          • In Davidi’s article about the Canadian team he notes Loewen as a Jay. So the question is do you believe Rogers or The Star?

          • My other sources (buncha google links) seem to suggest the Jays announced his return to the organization on Jan 12.
            I won’t get all maple boner’y about it but I’m happy for the dude and I hope he can make something out of the opportunity. At the very least he’s a depth option at 1B and in the OF who has a handful of Major League at bats.

  4. I had a really fun time reading that Google translate. Hopefully we can get some more of those.

    • Tuve un tiempo muy divertido leer que Google Translate. Espero que podamos conseguir un poco más de ellos.

      كان لي متعة الوقت أن قراءة الترجمة من Google. نأمل أن نحصل على بعض أكثر منها.

    • I wanna be a “launcher” when I grow up!

  5. Not only that, but Google Translate provided a perfect nickname for the kid – The Honduran Promise.

  6. Oh really? The fact that you hadn’t heard of him doesn’t suggest he’s a huge score? Like you’re so up to speed on most international players and the J2 prospects?


    • actually he said most of us, including himself.

      he’s not exactly a household name which is really what he was saying.. which is true.

      • Did anyone know who Franklin Barreto or Dawel Lugo were before they signed? Better yet, does anyone even know who they are now?

        Not household names by any means or anyone you probably heard of prior to the Jays signing them, yet still significant “prospect scores.” I’m not saying this kid is on their level, but most of the fanbase not knowing he exists doesn’t automatically preclude him from being a relatively significant signing

        • dude he signed for 20k. this isn’t significant at all

          find something else to bitch about

          • What in the fuck does that have to do with what I said? I never claimed he was a big prospect – in fact I went out of my way to basically he wasn’t – just that you not hearing about him doesn’t automatically mean he’s not a significant signing

            The fact that you had to wait until someone else told you what the bonus was reaffirms that, if anything

    • Semantics, dipshit. It all depends on your definition of huge.

      • Huh? Barreto was the #1 J2 international prospect last season. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that qualifies as “huge” in this context no matter what your twisted definition might be

        But I’m sure you were plenty familiar with him and the other guys the Jays signed too, because, you know, you hear about all the huge scores. What are your contacts telling you about next year’s crop?

        • Shitstain, you realize that Baseball America always does scouting reports and rankings of the international crop prior to the signing date, yet? They do quite a bit of reporting on the international market, actually. And certainly sometimes there are guys– Cubans mostly, granted– who are heard about prior to signing.

          Am I trying to pretend I have some vast knowledge here? No. Am I saying that it’s not “significant,” as you seem to think is an interchangeable term with my use of “huge”? No.

          Get a life.

          • WOAH, really? Baseball America scouts and writes about prospects!!!? Jesus fuck Stoeten, you’re dropping all kinds of knowledge today

            LOL gtfo. You expect me to believe you actually read anything prospect related that doesn’t have something to do with the Jays? I’ve had the displeasure of hearing you talk prospects when I, unwisely, listened to that thing you call a podcast. You know about as much about them as you do about the internal combustion engine

  7. Baseball almanac says there have only been 2 Honduran born big leaguers…Chito Martinez and Gerald Young…Both went to high school in the States though…Am I missing anyone???

    P.S. Bon Chance Denis…

  8. More prospects to trade for major league players….

  9. I don’t know if Eilliot missed a zero or two but he tweeted that Villatoro signed for $20,000

    Jays sign RHP Denis Villatoro from Honduras for $20,000 US

  10. Villatoro! “the village bull”

  11. Can I get a “Suck It Farrell!!” from the faithful??

  12. Villatoro is a great kid and a hard worker. Speaks English too. He’s from Tegucigalpa and the first native Honduran to sign a major league deal, at least to my knowledge.

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