Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Just a year ago, it appeared as though Henderson Alvarez was about to break out. Acquired by the Marlins prior to the 2013 season, Alvarez thrived in his second year in Miami, posting a 12-7 record with a 2.65 ERA and 1.235 WHiP, striking out 111 batters in 187 innings. Even if his strikeout rate was not what one would want for an ace, Alvarez appeared set to develop into an excellent second starter.
Last season, however, was a disaster. Hindered by shoulder woes and a torn labrum, Alvarez made only four starts, losing each contest while posting a 6.45 ERA and a 1.567 WHiP. The recovery from his torn labrum is expected to last into the upcoming season, but not long enough to be a hindrance for interested teams.
Alvarez, who is set to turn 26 just after the season begins, could be ready to return to form. A ground ball pitcher who has the potential to not only eat innings but to also develop into a top of the rotation option, Alvarez could be another solid option for the Kansas City Royals. A potential low cost option who could slot between Edinson Volquez and either Danny Duffy or Kris Medlen as the third starter, Alvarez could be the perfect solution as the Royals seek to fill out their rotation.
Just last year, Henderson Alvarez appeared to be a building block for the Marlins. Now, once he returns, he could be a solid fit in the Royals rotation.