Above: Brandon Villalobos while
pitching at Long Beach State.
It is with great sadness on this Easter Sunday that I inform all who love Valley sports as much as myself that we lost one of our best Saturday with the death of former Glendora High School pitcher Brandon Villalobos, who died from injuries suffered in an off-road accident in the high desert. He was 23. Villalobos was a hard-throwing lefthander who showed solid potential since earning All-Sierra League honorable mention as a sophomore. He was selected first team All-Area in 2003. He signed with Long Beach State out of Glendora and started five games for the Dirtbags in 2004 before being sidelined by an injury, which also forced him to miss all of the 2005 season. Villalobos, who also won a Babe Ruth World Series with the El Monte Dukes and a Connie Mack World Series with the Long Beach Cardinals, then transferred to Chaffey College, where he was 3-1 with a 2.87 ERA and had 32 strikeouts in the 37 innings during the 2006 season. He was drafted in the 23rd round by the Chicago White Sox, but elected to attend San Diego State. He missed the 2007 season, but had a limited role in 2008.
Villalobos, also the pitching coach at Glendale Hoover High School, signed with the Gateway Grizzlies of the Frontier League and was scheduled to report to the Sauget, Ill. team on April 23.
Funeral services are pending.
My only thoughts are that Brandon was a good kid with great talent, and he was always a joy to talk to. I also will repeat of what I wrote on the afterpreps blog about the recent tragedy that cost the life of Angel pitcher Nick Adenhart and how it effected former Glendora pitcher Wes Roemer, and that is that sometimes things don’t make sense in this life, or are even seem fair. I can only relate my personal experiences. I lost my best friend in life 10 years ago this summer, and my older brother passed a few years ago. I believe that all you can do in these circumstances are to reflect on the good times and keep your lost loved ones forever in your heart. On that thought, here is a video from a “Little House on the Praire” episode that I think explains it better than I can put into words. I have it bookmarked and often view it for my own peace of mind.