Astros: Top Prospect Yordan Alvarez has impressed In Spring Training
By Tomas Romo
The 21 year-old outfielder and first baseman has impressed in Spring Training and looks to be a big part of the Astros future.
Coming into the season Alvarez is ranked as the Astros number three prospect behind standouts Forrest Whitley and Kyle Tucker. Alvarez got traded to Houston back in 2016 when the Astros traded Josh Fields to the Los Angeles Dodgers. He is likely to begin the year in the minor leagues and could get some big league playing time in the future.
Alvarez has dominated all aspects of minor league pitching he has a career .301 average in the minors and split time between Double-A Corpus Christi and Triple-A Fresno. In Double-A he batted .325 with 12 HR’s and 46 RBI’s in 43 games. Once promoted he struggled at first in Triple-A but finished the year batting .259 with 8 HR’s and 28 RBI’s.
So far in 2019, Alvarez is batting .300 with 7 RBI and a .779 OPS in Spring Training. But while he hasn’t had a monstrous Spring Training he has shown manager AJ Hinch that he can be in the Astros lineup in the future, as noted here by Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle.
"“He’s an intimidating presence in the batter’s box, knows a ball from a strike, knows what he can do well, hits the ball hard. I can see why we like him,” said manager A.J. Hinch."
Only 21-years old, Alvarez has a lot of room to improve but a solid spring has brought excitement to Astros fans. On Saturday against the Phillies Alvarez went 1-for-4, which included a two-run double that went off the right field wall. Despite impressing with the bat has defense has surprised coaches at well. He is listed at 6’5″ and 225 pounds and the Astros view him primarily as a left-fielder. That said, he has surprised both Hinch and outfield coach Gary Pettis with his athleticism in the outfield.
While Alvarez will almost certainly not break camp on the Major League roster he has made a solid his first impression with his coaches, teammates, and the fans. Astros fans should be excited for Alvarez and provides an option to be called up if needed. He still has to work on his fundamentals offensively and defensively but he has proved he’s the real deal and will become a big part of the Astros in the near future.