ANDRES ALVAREZ, SHORTSTOP
|Born: March 29, 1997
Drafted: 22nd Round, 664th Overall, 2019
How Acquired: Draft
College: Washington State University
WTM’s PLAYER PROFILE
|Alvarez was an honorable mention as a shortstop to the all-Pac-12 team his last two seasons. He attended junior college for one year, then was a three-year starter for Washington State. His hitting was very consistent and unspectacular, as he posted an OPS of .755, .711 and .756 from his sophomore to his senior season. He has little power, but generally makes contact. As a senior, he signed quickly.
Alvarez played regularly in the GCL, splitting his time between third and short, and playing a few games at second. He struggled to hit against the much younger pitchers he was facing. He also had problems with errors at short. After the GCL season ended the Pirates moved him up to Greensboro to fill an injury-related opening.
The Pirates kept Alvarez in extended spring training until the beginning of July, then sent him to Greensboro when they moved Francisco Acuna down to Bradenton. Alvarez started off with a .622 OPS in July, very much in line with his weak 2019 season. In August, though, he exploded for a 385/479/564 line. Then in September he hit five home runs and posted an .858 OPS. A lot of the hitting was attributable to the Greensboro ballpark; he had five homers and a 1.137 OPS at home, two and .693 on the road. He split his time evenly between second, third and short, and pitched three times.
Alvarez kept up the power breakout with a big early season in Altoona. He also had an excellent year as a base stealer, becoming the first 20/20 player in Curve history. His hitting did drop off steadily during the season, as shown by his month-by-month OPS:
Alvarez’ K rate was 22% in the first half of the season, 30% in the second half, so it’s possible he got homer-happy and was over-swinging. On defense, Alvarez played third, second, left and short, in that order of frequency. He did not commit many errors.
Given his steady decline over the 2022 season, it’s still open to question whether Alvarez can hit at higher levels. He should get a chance to show he can at Indianapolis in 2023.
|2023: Minor league contract
MiLB Debut: 2019
MiLB FA Eligible: 2025
MLB FA Eligible:
Rule 5 Eligible: 2022
Added to 40-Man:
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
|June 5, 2019: Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 22nd round, 664th overall pick; signed on June 13.|