Infielder Andres Alvarez
Andres Alvarez was a 22nd-round pick by the Pirates in 2019. Alvarez didn’t play all that much in 2019 or 2021, collecting just 327 plate appearances and appearing in only 83 games between the two seasons. But Alvarez got an opportunity to play an entire season in 2022 and took full advantage of it.
In 443 plate appearances, Alvarez slashed .220/.339/.429 and crushed 20 home runs. With 21 stolen bases in 22 attempts, making him and Matt Gorski are the Pirates’ only 20/20 prospects this season. Alvarez put up a .209 isolated slugging percentage and walked at a 14.4% rate, the second-highest BB% among Pirates minor leaguers last season in at least 300 plate appearances. Between his ability to get on base at a healthy rate and hit for power, Alvarez put up a .342 wOBA and 111 wRC+.
The one downside is Alvarez struck out 27.8% of the time, which certainly doesn’t bode well for the future. But on the plus side, he can play multiple positions. Alvarez saw time at both middle infield positions, as well as third base and left field. He definitely has the speed to play up the middle and seemed to do fine in the outfield grass.
Even if he’s never a starting-caliber player, no team wouldn’t take a guy who can play anywhere you need him to and provide power and speed to reach double digits in both home runs and stolen bases, even in a part-time role. Alvarez is Rule 5 eligible, though, but the chances he gets taken in the draft are not very high.