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Yankees Top 30 Prospects for 2021: Kevin Alcantara (OF, #12)

Kevin Alcantara is already an above-average toolsy player. He has the potential to be like Dexter Fowler in the field, meaning solid starter/All-Star level talent could be seen in his future. However, just 18-year-old, he has lots of physical development to go which will increase the number of things he’ll need to fine tune to access that potential. To me, I’d play it safe with him now so that we can see a better product at the MLB level.

 

KEVIN ALCANTARA, OF (#12):

Age/Date of Birth: 18 Years Old (07/12/2002)

Most Recent Team(s) (Level and Year): Yankees East (Gulf Coast League, Rookie)

Most Recent Yearly Statistics (2019): .260/.289/.358 (.647 OPS), 1 HR, 13 RBIs, 3 Walks, 27 Strikeouts (32 Games, 128 At-Bats)

Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Height/Weight: 6’6”/188 Pounds

Acquired: Signed by the Yankees during the 2018 International Free Agent Period.

MLB ETA: 2023

 

KEVIN ALCANTARA SCOUTING GRADES (20-80 SCALE):

Hit/Power: 50/55

Run: 60

Field/Arm: 55/55

Overall: 50

 

What to Know:


Coming out of the Dominican Republic, the Yankees took advantage of a large bonus pool to sign one of the youngest and highest potential players across the international market in Kevin Alcantara. Signing at a flat $1 million, the Yankees got the then 16-year-old.


Coming into the 2019 season, Alcantara started the season with the DSL Yankees (Dominican Summer League; Foreign Rookie) where he played just 9 games before earning a promotion. During his 9-game stint, Alcantara hit to a solid .237/.348/.368.


Alcantara would spend most of his 2019 professional season with the Yankees East (Gulf Coast League, Rookie), breaking into the league at just 16-years-old that June. This made him the youngest player in the Yankees U.S. based farm. While there, he would hit to a .260/.289/.358 triple-slash.


Over the 2020 calendar year, Alcantara’s only true development came at the Yankees Dominican instructional league that occurred in the Fall. Although, this is true with many of the Yankees young international talent.


As a hitter, Alcantara has a comp to be a similar player to Dexter Fowler given his size and tools. He has good bat speed and is expected as he develops to put on a lot of muscle, which will only help to aid his top exit velocities that he is already showing. However, his plate discipline (as to be expected from an 18-year-old) does need some work.


As a fielder, Alcantara is currently poised to man center field of which he is able to do so because he can cover the ground well due to plus-speed. However, there is a concern with the expected muscle that Alcantara will put on that this will slow down his speed and lead him better to a corner outfield role. Though, with this should also come an increase to his already solid arm strength.

What Will the Future Hold?


Alcantara has a number of years of development left even though his tools already stand out as some of the best across the system, grading above average in everything but hit (which is average). Because of this and the fact that he already has some experience in professional baseball, I would expect the Yankees to start him with the Tampa Tarpons (Class Low-A) for 2021. However, just like our #13 prospect Alexander Vargas, the two of them are in very similar boats where I would also expect that with his professional debut, 2021 will bring a mid-season promotion to the Hudson Valley Renegades (Class High-A) as it would’ve been expected he would have gotten to the level in a normal 2020 season.


With an MLB ETA of 2023, Alcantara has the ability to reach the goal. At this point in his development, he has the framework to build off of and fine-tune, but his game does and will play up in the minor leagues. However, it is risky to elevate a player with much more physical development to come given how that could effect his game and his ability to adjust. For me, I would want to play it safe (especially given the backload of outfield talent) to allow for this to happen in a low-risk environment, thus I would be slower to promote Alcantara. Though, having a future Dexter Fowler is awesome.

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