Updated on September 6, 2019: Francisco Alvarez had an absolutely great first professional season within the Mets organization and even owns an organizational best 155 wRC+.
The 17 year old catcher hit .312/.407/.510 with 10 doubles, 7 home runs, 32 RBI’s and earned 21 base on balls in 42 games.
The Mets gave him franchise record $2.7 IFA bonus in 2018.
On July 2nd, 2018, The Mets signed then 16-year old catcher Francisco Alvarez out of Guatire, Venezuela. Alvarez was ranked the 9th best international prospect at the time and it took roughly $3M to get him. Now just over a full year later and at the tender age of 17, the youngster has really taken to professional baseball.
Throughout two levels of low level Rookie ball, Alvarez has played in 14 games and has accumulated 61 plate appearances. His combined slash line is .388/.508/.673/1.182 with 19 hits in just 49 at-bats, 5 of which were doubles and 3 were home runs.
He’s crossed the plate and scored 14 times and that’s just as many runners as he’s driven in, so far. His 9 walks is a clear-cut example of how advanced his approach is at 17 years old.
The publication “Baseball America” has this on the catcher last year, “One of the strongest players in the class… He has a stout, blocky frame, although he moves surprisingly well underway for his size. Alvarez’s swing starts with a small toe tap and he generates big raw power with an aggressive hack.”
There was questions about his defense at the time of the signing however scouts have been raving about his agility behind the dish as well as his laser beam for a throwing arm and is currently ranked as the third highest catcher on “The MLB Pipeline”.
He has a short and compact swing which allows him to spray the ball to all parts of the field. On the base paths, he’s a below average runner but hey, he’s a catcher that spends roughly all is time squatting down, he gets the pass on that.
Francisco Alvarez’s ETA to the Major League’s will approximately be by 2023, however, if the kid keeps on showing advanced signs while in the batter’s box and is continuing to put it together defensively, he could force the organizations hand.
And let’s not forget this, he’s still 17 years old… just wow.