Cubs High-A Hitter of the First Half: Kevin Alcantara OF (20 Years Old)
.269/.329/.446 48 RBI, 45 R, 9 HR, 17 2B, 20/71 K/BB 12-for-16 SB
Kevin Alcantara is another of the pieces that makes the bloodbath of the 2021 trade deadline hurt a little less. He’s been the High-A hitting prospect of the week several times this season and at one point I said:
This one feels good. As much as I love when Carlos Guzman and Jared Young get to have a week to be celebrated, you need your top prospects to play like top prospects. Alcantara had a slow start to the year to say the least and you’d still like to see the power expand a little bit, but his slash line this week combined with his stolen base and his home run gives you a little glimpse of what you can hope for at the upper levels in a year or so.
He had an incredibly rough start to the season. There’s no way around that. However in the month of June he hit .306/.379/.518 with nine extra-base hits and a stolen base. That’s what you want to see. If that weren’t good enough, I’ll direct you to the July that he had prior to the All-Star Break where he hit an astounding .435/.519/.783 with four extra-base hits and a stolen base.
Even more important than the average or the power or the speed is what always tends to come last for hitters: the patience. This month, he has more walks (4) than he does strikeouts (3). If he can come back after the break and continue that trend, he’ll be in Double-A by the end of the season and help open the window to legitimate contention wide open for the major league team by the end of 2024.
Regardless of the perceived areas of need on the major league roster right now or even next season based on the current players under contract, Alcantarahas value. If the Cubs genuinely have too many good outfielders/DH options to find a way to get him on the field then he becomes some of the best trade bait on the market next year for whatever they need to get them over the hump and into the playoffs.