Prospect #28: RHP Alvaro Seijas
Entering age-19 season.
Signed as an international free agent on July 2, 2015
#35 on my personal list
What I Like
The first thing that jumps out about Alvaro Seijas is his age. Last season (his age-18 season) you can’t say he excelled. However, there are some bright spots in a state line highlighted by a 4.97 ERA. The fact that he was nearly three years younger than the average player Appy League. Also, when considering a minor league pitcher’s, particularly at a short-season level, don’t put too much stock in it. The game isn’t at a major league level, and that includes playing fields, defenders, hitters, and umpires. An ERA is dependent on those factors more than any other statistic, so while it’s nice to see a low ERA, it isn’t a be-all-end-all statistic. Okay, I’ll get off my soapbox.
I love that Seijas made every start he was supposed to in 2017. That’s a huge success for an 18-year-old pitcher in his first season stateside. He also averaged over five innings per start, no small feat for a pitcher. He also struck out over 20% of hitters and walked 6.9% of hitters.
Seijas uses an unusual over the top delivery. It’s max-effort and he tries to create as much downhill action as possible. It’s more effective than you’d think, as his listed height of 5’8” is deceptive. On video, he looks at least 6 feet tall. According to Eric Longenhagen, his curveball and changeup have the potential to be plus and his fastball velocity sits 91-95 miles per hour.
What I Don’t Like
Even though I said not to put too much stock in Seijas’ ERA, the fact remains that he gave up too many runs. Part of that is due to an astronomically high BABIP of .393. Meanwhile, while I’m a fan of his unique delivery, the thought of injury is always there.
There’s really not much else to say about Seijas. The usual negatives aren’t there. He didn’t give up a ton of homers, he didn’t walk a ton of batters, and he got a solid amount of ground balls. Seijas is about as far from a sure thing as you could possibly find in the Cardinals system. He’s a young, raw pitcher who has never been on a full-season club. Frankly, I don’t expect that to change in 2018. That’s not a bad thing. The club should learn from their handling of Sandy Alcantara and move slowly with Seijas. If he starts the season in Extended Spring Training that’s okay, but I’d expect a promotion to Peoria by the end of the season.
Thanks for reading!
Thanks to Baseball-Reference, Fangraphs and Eric Longenhagen for the information provided that was used in this post. Get caught up with our previous rankings here.