Pirates Winter Leagues: Andres Alvarez Leads His League in Hitting

The Pittsburgh Pirates had seven players who saw winter ball action on Thursday.

Puerto Rico

Tsung-Che Cheng went 2-for-4 with a single and a double. He has a .196 average and a .557 OPS in 13 games, with two doubles, a triple, two steals and four walks.

Josh Palacios went 1-for-5 with an RBI double and an RBI ground out. He has a .250 average and a .797 OPS in 12 games, with three doubles, a triple and a homer.

Shawn Ross walked as a pinch-hitter in his only plate appearance of the game. He has a .120 average and a .428 OPS through 29 games, with a triple, homer, 11 walks and 35 strikeouts in 88 plate appearances.


Andres Alvarez went 2-for-4 with a double, RBI and a walk. He is leading the league with a .373 average and 35 RBIs in 31 games. He is second in the league with seven homers. He leads the league with 47 hits, and his 1.091 OPS is second in the league by seven points. I wrote about the work Alvarez was doing this offseason in this past week’s Pirates Winter Report.

Rodolfo Nolasco went 1-for-4 with a single and a walk. He’s hitting .233 with a .758 OPS in 27 games.

Francisco Acuna went 2-for-4 with two singles, a run and an RBI. He’s hitting .229 with a .707 OPS in 29 games.


Fabricio Macias went 2-for-3 with two singles, giving him a .263 average and a .674 OPS in 55 games, with 14 doubles, two triples and a homer. His OPS is 11 points above league average.

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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 Diego Castillo from the Pirates, per Justice delos Santos of MLB.com. In exchange, the Pirates will receive minor league right-hander Scott Randall.


Lewin Diaz just got traded to the Braves. Will Pirate nation blow up if he does well there?

Wilbur Miller

I’m skeptical of Alvarez because his pattern is similar to Mason Martin’s. He hits well at a new level, then falls off as the pitchers learn he’ll chase. His monthly OPS at Altoona:


His K rate also spiraled upward.

Still, he’s a great story. I hope he makes the adjustments.


Is Andres Alvarez going to be a viable major leaguer? Or just another minor league success story?


He’s played himself beyond a AA utility man into a viable candidate in the future for a ML utility man…
Only The Shadow knows…

Last edited 1 month ago by JimEastTennessee

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