Wow. That’s all most of us can say at this point. We knew the Boston Red Sox were looking heavily at Anthony Rizzo, so for the New York Yankees to swoop in and scoop him up was somewhat of a shock. We knew this trade deadline was figuring to be a wild one but now the reality has set in. Chicago Cubs fans now know it is inevitable, the 2016 team is being scrapped.
Before we look at the return for Rizzo, it has to be said that Jed Hoyer so far has done a fantastic job. As fans, we love the players we love and we think they should stay no matter what just because we love them. The fact is, if you take your heart out of the equation, Hoyer brought back a sizable haul in the returns for Joc Pederson, Andrew Chafin, Ryan Tepera and, now, Anthony Rizzo.
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Hoyer is doing exactly what needs to be done. Never rule out a potential return of Rizzo in the offseason either. The Yankees did it to us in 2016, got a haul for Aroldis Chapman and then re-signed him immediately after the season ended. What goes around could certainly come around in this aspect. So hold onto hope on that regard.
Looking ahead, Hoyer managed to land another team’s #9 prospect and a #12 as well. Let’s start with former, Alexander Vizcaino.
Chicago Cubs: Breaking down Alexander Vizcaino and Kevin Alcantara
Vizcaino signed out of the Dominican Republic with the Yankees in 2016. His fastball and change-up have a 65 grade on a scale of 20-80. Between Rookie ball all the way to High-A, Vizcaino’s career numbers sit at 12-21 with a 4.95 ERA. He will need to improve his control if he looks to continue to move up the Cubs minor league ranks. The plus-plus fastball grade and plus-plus change up is encouraging. If he can harness everything and put it together, he can find himself on the big league rotation or possibly as a bulk reliever within a couple years.
Shifting our attention to the #12 prospect in the Yankees system, let’s dive in on outfielder Kevin Alcantara. Signed by the New York Yankees in the 2018 IFA Class, Alcantara has slashed a career .269/.325/.382. Although in 2021, his line has impressively increased with a .360/.448/.520 in Rookie ball for the FCL Yankees. At only 19 years old, he possesses extremely high potential. Though likely at least two years away from the big leagues, he is on the fastest track possible by putting up the numbers he has.
Hoyer has now made deals for Greg Deichmann who has landed at #17 in the Cubs farm system. Bailey Horn had landed at #30 but now has been pushed down two spots with the arrival of Vizcaino and Alcantara.
According to MLB Pipeline, Vizcaino is now the Cubs’ #6 prospect, with Alcantara landing at #9, respectively. If you ask Fangraphs, though, Alcantara ranks sixth and Vizcaino at 11. That is three new faces that are all inside the top 20 in the Cubs organization. Not a bad haul for a guy on his way out.
Rizzo will be sorely missed by the Wrigleyville faithful. However, with the longtime Cubs first baseman due to be a free agent at the end of the season, I have a funny feeling we haven’t seen the last of Anthony in Cubbie blue. Here’s to hoping we get our first baseman back this winter.