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Carlos Manuel Villanueva Paulino (born November 28, 1983) is a Dominican former professional baseball pitcher. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Milwaukee Brewers, Toronto Blue Jays, Chicago Cubs, St. Louis Cardinals and San Diego Padres.

Carlos Villanueva
Carlos Villanueva on August 12, 2016 (2) (cropped).jpg
Villanueva with the Padres in 2016
Born: (1983-11-28) November 28, 1983 (age 35)
Santiago, Dominican Republic
Batted: Right Threw: Right
Professional debut
MLB: May 23, 2006, for the Milwaukee Brewers
KBO: March 31, 2017, for the Hanwha Eagles
Last appearance
MLB: September 24, 2016, for the San Diego Padres
KBO: 2017, for the Hanwha Eagles
MLB statistics
Win–loss record51–55
Earned run average4.31
KBO statistics
Win–loss record5–7
Earned run average4.18


Milwaukee BrewersEdit

Villanueva was signed by the San Francisco Giants in 2002.[1] He and Glenn Woolard were traded to the Milwaukee Brewers on March 30, 2004, for pitchers Wayne Franklin and Leo Estrella. He joined the Beloit Snappers, the Brewers Single A club.[2][3]

As he worked his way through the Brewers' farm system, Villanueva was called up to the Brewers from Double-A Huntsville on May 22, 2006. He made his Major League debut against the Cincinnati Reds on May 23, 2006, pitching a scoreless inning. After being optioned back to the minors, Villanueva was recalled again, making his first career Major League start for the Brewers against the Cincinnati Reds.

Villanueva pitching for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2009

After a successful 2006 campaign, Villanueva entered the 2007 spring training in competition for the Brewers fifth spot in the starting rotation. Despite pitching well, he lost the job to Claudio Vargas. Instead, manager Ned Yost elected to put Villanueva into the bullpen as a middle relief pitcher. Villanueva pitched well in his new role and was occasionally used as a long relief pitcher when Elmer Dessens was placed on the DL. On July 2, Villanueva was 6-0 with a 2.64 ERA. Despite his record, Villanueva was accustomed to only being used as a starting pitcher, and had never appeared in more than 25 games in his professional career. Through July and August, he posted a 1-3 record with an ERA of over 9, perhaps a sign of being overworked. Despite his struggles, he was still being used as a middle relief pitcher. On August 20, after pitching 3 perfect innings against the Arizona Diamondbacks and picking up his first career save, he was optioned to the Triple-A Nashville Sounds to make two starts to "polish up" for a September call up when the rosters expand.

Villanueva spent a short part of the 2009 season as the closer while Trevor Hoffman recovered on the disabled list;[4] however, after poor performances, the role was given to Todd Coffey instead.[5]

Toronto Blue JaysEdit

On December 3, 2010, Villanueva was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays for a player to be named later (cash).[6]

Villanueva during his tenure with the Toronto Blue Jays in 2012

After starting the season in the bullpen for the Blue Jays, he was moved to a position in the starting rotation to fill in for open spots previously filled by Brett Cecil and Jesse Litsch. On August 4, 2011, Villanueva was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a right forearm strain. Villanueva was re-activated from the disabled list on August 31. Brian Tallet was designated for assignment to make room for Villanueva.[7] Villanueva began the 2012 season as the long reliever in the Jays' bullpen, but was promoted to a starter after numerous injuries to the pitching staff. After posting a 6-1 record, Villanueva left the team for personal reasons on August 5. J. A. Happ started in place of Villanueva.[8]

Chicago CubsEdit

On December 19, 2012, it was reported that Villanueva had agreed a two-year, $10 million contract with the Chicago Cubs.[9] The deal became official on January 26, 2013, more than a month after it was initially agreed upon. Lendy Castillo was designated for assignment to make room for Villanueva on the 40-man roster. Dale Sveum made Villanueva the Cubs fifth starter in their rotation.[10] His first game on April 6, a road game against the Atlanta Braves, resulted in a no decision.[11]

St. Louis CardinalsEdit

Villanueva with the Cardinals in 2015

On February 4, 2015, the St. Louis Cardinals signed Villanueva to a minor league contract that included an invitation to spring training.[12] The Cardinals added him to their 40-man roster on March 30.[13] On June 27, he pitched the last three innings of an 8–1 victory over the Cubs for his first save of the season,[14] and did so again on August 7 against the Brewers in a 6–0 win.[15] It was his fourth[14] and fifth career save of at least three innings. Villanueva pitched solely out of the bullpen in 2015 and was credited with a 4–3 record with two saves, 55 strikeouts, and 50 hits and 21 walks allowed. He posted career-bests in ERA (2.95) and inherited runners strand rate (80.5 percent); the WHIP (1.16), batting average on balls in play (.265) and batting average against (.220) were his best figures since his first MLB season with the Brewers.[16]

San Diego PadresEdit

On January 13, 2016, the San Diego Padres signed Villanueva to a one-year, $1.5 million contract.[16]

Hanwha EaglesEdit

On February 24, 2017, he signed with the Hanwha Eagles of the KBO League.[17]


  1. ^ Eymer, Rick (March 3, 2013). "Sandoval homers in Giants win". Associated Press. Archived from the original on February 5, 2015. Retrieved February 4, 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  2. ^ Callis, Jim (March 30, 2004). "Giants shore up pitching with Franklin, Estrella". Baseball America. Retrieved February 4, 2015.
  3. ^ "Giants acquire Franklin and Estrella from Milwaukee for 2 minor leaguers". March 30, 2004. Retrieved February 4, 2015.
  4. ^ McCalvy, Adam. Hoffman getting closer to mound work Archived 2011-06-15 at the Wayback Machine, Milwaukee Brewers. Published April 11, 2009. Retrieved April 23, 2009.
  5. ^ Coffey closing, but cool with any role Archived 2012-02-24 at the Wayback Machine, Milwaukee Brewers. Published April 23, 2009. Retrieved April 23, 2009.
  6. ^ Chisholm, Gregor (December 3, 2010). "Blue Jays acquire Villanueva from Brewers". Archived from the original on December 5, 2010. Retrieved December 4, 2010. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  7. ^ "Jays activate Villanueva, designate Tallet for assignment". August 31, 2011. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  8. ^ Fletcher, Jeff (August 5, 2012). "Blue Jays move up Happ as Villanueva takes leave". Archived from the original on August 9, 2012. Retrieved August 5, 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  9. ^ Snyder, Matt. "Cubs, Carlos Villanueva agree to 2-year, 10 million deal". Retrieved December 19, 2012.
  10. ^ Yellon, Al (January 26, 2013). "Carlos Villanueva Deal Official, Lendy Castillo DFAd". Retrieved January 26, 2013.
  11. ^
  12. ^ Sheldon, Mark (February 4, 2015). "Cards add righty Villanueva on Minor League deal". Retrieved February 4, 2015.
  13. ^ White, R.J. (March 30, 2015). "Cardinals add Carlos Villanueva, place Jaime Garcia on DL". Retrieved March 30, 2015.
  14. ^ a b Muskrat, Carrie; Langosch, Jenifer (June 27, 2015). "Cards put on clinic vs. Cubs for 5th straight W". Retrieved June 28, 2015.
  15. ^ Curry, Brandon (August 8, 2015). "Lynn continues Cards' strong run of pitching". Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  16. ^ a b Sanders, Jeff (January 13, 2016). "What to know: Hello, Carlos Villanueva". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved January 16, 2016.
  17. ^ "Hanwha Eagles sign ex-big league pitcher". yonhapnews. February 24, 2017. Retrieved February 24, 2017.

External linksEdit