December 12, 2017 - Frontier League (FL) - Washington Wild Things
WASHINGTON, Pa. - The Washington Wild Things continue to make moves to put together the 2018 roster, as the team announced Monday the signing of right-handed pitcher Garrett Alvarez to a deal. Alvarez was most recently with the Bakersfield Train Robbers of the Pecos League in 2017. Prior, he pitched for the White Sands Pupfish in the Pecos League in 2016, and for Western Oregon University from 2015-2016.
Alvarez, a native of Madera, California, comes to the Wild Things after a successful, All-Star season with Bakersfield last summer. The then-25 year old posted a 5-3 record and a 2.76 earned run average in 13 appearances (10 starts). Alvarez, who turned 26 in November, logged 71.2 innings for the Train Robbers in those 13 games, and surrendered just 22 earned runs, walked 23 and struck out 72.
For White Sands in 2016, Alvarez pitched 31 innings over the course of seven appearances and struck out 26. As a junior in 2015 at WOU, the right-hander appeared in 12 games with 10 starts, tossing a total of 61.2 innings. He was 6-2 with a 4.38 ERA, while owning a strikeout to walk ratio of 48 to 20.
In 2016, Alvarez went 7-0 in 12 games (11 starts) with a 3.40 earned run average. He pitched 76.2 innings and gave up 29 earned runs, walked 24 and struck out 55. In both seasons at WOU, Alvarez was awarded All-Great Northwest Athletic Conference laurels.
"Quality rookies come from all parts of the country, all levels of play and differing backgrounds. Garrett has a very unique story and his perseverance is quite remarkable. Garrett should be one of the older players on the roster but his maturity should benefit him as a rookie," said general manager Steven Zavacky. "Even talking with him, he has a great understanding of who he is as a pitcher and is very detail oriented when it comes to his preparation."
He added, "We thought it was worthwhile to take a gamble on Garrett but he is aware that this opportunity is just the beginning. His goal is to make our Opening Day rotation and we anticipate him to walk into Spring Training with something to prove."
For Alvarez, the opportunity is one he is excited for, and he said he can't wait to get to work.
"This group is one the rise, bringing their phenomenal talent back into 2018, and I cannot be more excited to get to work on and off the diamond as a Wild Thing to bring the people of Washington County something great," said Alvarez.
In terms of his past experience, Alvarez thinks it's something that can benefit him as he tries to make the roster, and he also thinks he'll benefit from some of the things he brings to the table.
"The relationships I made with my closest teammates have been the best part of the time in [professional baseball]," said Alvarez. "In the dugout, as well as in the ??game, I'm a player who loves seeing teammates find a way to compete every pitch, from the first to the last. [Personally], I'm a player bringing a little charismatic intensity and [I'm] expressive with excitement in the pivotal moments of the game."
Off the field, Alvarez said he's just like any other guy. He said he enjoys watching other sporting events, going fishing, hitting the gym and binge-watching his favorite shows. He's also an uber driver on the side, and loves being in the community.
"Overall, being a part of the community with sports is a big inspiration of mine, specifically coaching baseball with the younger crowds, from little-league to even the college level," he said.
He's got his expectations, but said the coaches will decide what role potentially fits best for him.
"From my end, the expectation is to be professional in every possible way," said Alvarez. "[I'll give] 100-percent effort [and] 100-percent attitude. Every effort given on that mound reflects all the work put in this off-season and upcoming spring for the team. The expectation is to be successful."
Alvarez is under contract and will compete for a starting rotation spot in Spring Training with the Wild Things.