After being swept by the Chicago White Sox over the weekend, the SF Giants looked to inject new life into the roster. On Monday, they promoted one of the top power-hitting prospects in the system.
If you have been following any Giants conversation on social media, you will likely have come across the name David Villar. After a surprisingly strong season in Double-A last year, Villar got off to a blistering start in Triple-A in 2022 and never really cooled down.
Giants fans have been clamoring for the Giants to promote the 25-year-old prospect and it looks like they will be getting their wish on Monday. According to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, Villar was added to the active roster and he is expected to be in today's lineup against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Yunior Marte and Sean Hjelle were optioned back to Triple-A to make room for Villar as well as Mauricio Llovera, who was recalled on Monday.
Villar began to put his name on the map in 2021 when he set a Richmond Flying Squirrels franchise record by blasting 20 home runs. That record will not stand for long as fellow corner infielder Sean Roby already has clubbed 20 home runs in 2022 with Richmond.
The new Giants infielder slashed .275/.374/.507 (141 wRC+) with 20 home runs, 58 RBI, and 70 runs in 446 plate appearances with Richmond last year. This included a strong 10.3 percent walk rate against a 25.3 percent strikeout rate. Villar excelled in an Eastern League that is often very tough on hitters for a variety of reasons.
He got off to a torrid pace with the Sacramento River Cats and has continued at that level until his promotion on Monday. The right-handed bat has registered a .284/.409/.633 line (151 wRC+) with 21 homers, 62 RBI, and 53 runs in 281 plate appearances. His walk rate has improved to 15.7 percent in Triple-A.
Villar came up as a corner infield prospect, but he has been seeing more time at second base recently. Second base is an area where the Giants have struggled this year, especially defensively, so the experiment at second base seemed like a precursor to a promotion. Given the Giants' recent struggles, the power-hitting prospect should get an extended look with the big club.