On the same day the New York Mets suspended Matt Harvey for failure to report to Citi Field, the Los Angeles Dodgers faced a similar issue in their organization — at least on the surface.
Two minutes before first pitch at LoanMart Field, the High-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes announced Yadier Alvarez was a late scratch from his start. Ryan Moseley took the mound in Alvarez’s place, making his first career start for the Quakes.
An explanation was not provided for Alvarez’s absence. Taylor Ward of Scout Media later reported the right-hander did not arrive at the stadium for his outing:
source: #Dodgers prospect, Yadier Alvarez, was scratched from today's High-A start because he did not show up to stadium
— Taylor Blake Ward (@TaylorBlakeWard) May 7, 2017
While that was an ominous sign, Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball clarified Alvarez was tending to a personal matter:
yadier alvarez was scratched from start for high-a @RCQuakes due to a personal reason, something he needed to attend to. no reason for alarm
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) May 8, 2017
After spending last season with the Arizona League Dodgers and Low-A Great Lakes, Alvarez joined the Quakes this year in mid-April. He’s 0-1 with a 6.43 ERA and 1.64 WHIP in four starts with the Rancho Cucamonga.
Alvarez didn’t record a strikeout in his debut with the Quakes, but has at least three punchouts in his other three outings.
The Dodgers signed the Cuban flamethrower for a $16 million bonus during the 2015-16 international signing period. Alvarez entered the season ranked as the organization’s unquestioned top pitching prospect, and top prospect overall by some publications.