Thursday, June 05, 2008

Quick thoughts about Alvarez

In bullet point form!

  • Do not assume that just because he's a college kid he's going to be easy or quick to sign. Boras clients (JD Drew and Luke Hochevar come immediately to mind) have sat out a year and played in independent leagues before and they will do it again. Wieters didn't sign with the Orioles until the signing deadline last year. The Pirates and Boras are going to haggle over money, a Major League contract, and a lot of other things before this deal gets done.
  • I do think he'll sign. You don't get as excited as he was over being drafted if you aren't looking to sign. It just won't be easy.
  • If he does sign quickly, my best guess for him is that he'll start out in Hickory. From what I can tell, Huntington's got a very high opinion of him and I don't think they're going to screw around with him by leaving him in the low minors for long. If he doesn't sign until August (the 15th is the deadline), he might go to State College just to get some swings after a long layoff, though our first real look at him if he signs late may be in fall ball (like it was for Wieters last year).
Don't look now, but the Pittsburgh Pirates drafted a real left-handed power hitter in the first round of the draft. Still, we're the Pirates for a reason. Alvarez is a great pick, but the next rounds are every bit as important as this one. Even if Alvarez blooms into a 40-homer a year guy, this draft is a failure if he's the only prospect to come out of it.