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Fernando Villaescusa

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Juan Fernando Villaescusa Elias

  • Bats Left, Throws Right
  • Height 6' 0", Weight 176 lb.

BR Minors page

Fernando Villaescusa was a Mexican League infielder for 17 years. He is the brother of Antonio Villaescusa, the father of Fernando Villaescusa Jr. and the uncle of Ivan Villaescusa. He was a good contact hitter and defensive second baseman during his career.

Fernando Villaescusa debuted in 1978, split between the Plataneros de Tabasco (0 for 5) and the Lethbridge Dodgers (.280/.351/.380). In 1979, he played briefly for the Lodi Dodgers (11 for 30) and Clinton Dodgers (0 for 6). The next year, the 21-year-old hit .255 in 35 games between Lodi and the Vero Beach Dodgers. In '81, he bounced between Vero Beach (.235/.294/.250 in 48 G), the Orlando Twins (1 for 11) and the Leones de Yucatan (.278/.307/.347 in 27 G).

Villaescusa hit .309/.376/.394 for the 1982 Leones, then .322/.368/.369 in '83, with 20 steals in 31 tries. For Yucatan in 1984, he batted .301/.368/.369, duplicating both his OBP and slugging percentage from the prior season, a rare feat. He stole 22 bases in 32 tries. He hit .340/.395/.396 with 20 stolen bases and 12 times caught in 1985. He spent part of the year with the Midland Angels as well, going 8 for 39.

Fernando put up a .351/.404/.414 line in 59 games for the 1986 Leones and .295/.320/.366 with 15 stolen bases (in 20 attempts) in 1987. In '88, he hit .304/.351/.350 to end his 8-year run with Yucatan. He moved to the Campeche Pirates in 1989 and batted .333/.357/.389 with 20 steals in 26 tries, his 4th and last 20-steal season. He scored a career-high 79 that year. During 1990, the veteran infielder hit .325/.365/.410 for the Rieleros de Aguascalientes.

Villaescusa became player-manager for Yucatan starting in 1991. He still could put up a good average, hitting .304/.367/.353 while guiding his team to a 70-52 finish. They were 70-61 in '92 when he batted .316/.370/.372 and stole 13 bases in 16 tries, showing good speed for a manager. He hit .317/.365/.356 in 1993 but the club fell to 51-72 and he lost his job at the helm.

Moving to the Saraperos de Saltillo for 1994, Fernando batted .313/.360/.336. In '95, he hit .352/.407/.402 for the Charros de Jalisco and spent part of the year as manager. He was 2 for 11 for Campeche in '96 and managed them for part of the season. A full-time manager in 1997, he was 65-56 for the Monclova Steelers.

Villaescusa made it to the final ballot for the Salón de la Fama in 2006 but was not voted in through 2010. He was dropped from the ballot after 2010.

Primary Source: The Mexican League: Comprehensive Player Statistics by Pedro Treto Cisneros

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