Los Angeles Dodgers prospect Yadier Alvarez has had a bumpy road the last four years since being signed out of Cuba.
There’s no doubting the right-handed pitcher’s pure talent on the field, but due to control issues on the mound and off-the-field problems, he has not been able to put it all together and reach the Major Leagues.
Once considered a top prospect in the organization, Alvarez was added to the Dodgers’ 40-man roster before the 2019 season and spent some time in big league camp during Spring Training.
That did not translate to success on the field though as he only appeared in two games for Double-A Tulsa during the regular season, giving up six runs in 3.2 innings. His season came to an end when the Dodgers placed him on the restricted list in September because of multiple unexcused absences, removing him from the 40-man roster.
While that was the last anyone heard of Alvarez, he reported to Camelback Ranch for Spring Training this week seemingly a new man. He said that he has been seeing a psychologist and wants to put the off-the-field issues behind him, via Pedro Moura of The Athletic:
Yadier Álvarez, former top prospect, spoke to reporters. He has had discipline issues during his unproductive four-season tenure with the Dodgers. He said several times the has been “acting like a child” and resolved to act more professionally. A psychologist helped him, he said.
— Pedro Moura (@pedromoura) February 19, 2020
Alvarez still is just 23 years of age and has a fastball that approaches triple digits, so he still has plenty of time to turn his career around if he is committed to being a professional.
Perhaps he can benefit from mentorship from some of the veterans on the team, which was the case for Yasiel Puig when he was first coming up through the Dodgers’ system and needed some guidance.
The Dodgers will allow Alvarez an opportunity in big league camp again this spring. If he proves he is fit to return to the field by the end of it, then they will need to activate him from the restricted list and open up a spot on the 40-man roster to do so.
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