The Dodgers signed Alvarez for $2 million in June 2016 and sent him to the Astros a month later -- before he had made his pro debut -- in a deadline deal for Josh Fields. Despite Fields' effectiveness as a regular-season reliever, that deal could be doubly regrettable for Los Angeles because he gave up two runs in Game 2 of the 2017 World Series to help set Houston on a path to its first championship and Alvarez has become one of the game's best offensive prospects. He batted .299/.374/.507 in his first two full pro seasons while swiftly advancing to Triple-A.
Though he's a big man at 6-foot-5 and 225 pounds, Alvarez has a relatively compact swing for his size and makes repeated hard contact to all fields. His bat speed, strength, leverage and loft in his left-handed stroke give him tremendous natural pop and he understands that he doesn't have to swing for the fences to hit home runs. He has good feel for the barrel and understands the strike zone, so he should hit for average as well as power.
While Alvarez is more athletic than many players his size, he's not going to provide a lot of value beyond his bat. He can flash solid speed once he gets going but projects as a below-average runner as he continues to mature physically. The Astros believe he's a better defender in left field, where he has a fringy arm, than at first base, where scouts from other clubs think he'll eventually wind up.
Statcast - Batting
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Los Angeles Dodgers signed free agent Yordan Alvarez.
1B Yordan Alvarez assigned to DSL Dodgers1.
Houston Astros traded RHP Josh Fields to Los Angeles Dodgers for 1B Yordan Alvarez.
DH Yordan Alvarez assigned to DSL Astros Orange.
DH Yordan Alvarez assigned to Quad Cities River Bandits from DSL Astros Orange.
LF Yordan Alvarez assigned to Buies Creek Astros from Quad Cities River Bandits.
OF Yordan Alvarez assigned to Houston Astros.
LF Yordan Alvarez assigned to Corpus Christi Hooks from Buies Creek Astros.
Corpus Christi Hooks placed LF Yordan Alvarez on the 7-day disabled list.
LF Yordan Alvarez assigned to Frederick Keys.
LF Yordan Alvarez assigned to Fresno Grizzlies.
Corpus Christi Hooks activated LF Yordan Alvarez from the 7-day disabled list.
Yordan Alvarez assigned to Fresno Grizzlies from Corpus Christi Hooks.
Houston Astros invited non-roster LF Yordan Alvarez to spring training.
Houston Astros selected the contract of 1B Yordan Alvarez from Round Rock Express.