Former Blue Jays pitcher Henderson Alvarez turns 32 today.
Henderson was number 5 on our 2010 top 40 prospect list and then dropped to 11th in 2011. We wrote this about him in 2011:
11. Henderson Alvarez (Number 5 on last year’s list): A year ago, Alex Anthopoulos was calling him our best pitching prospect and then he went out and added a bunch of guys that jumped the queue on him. He started his first look at Dunedin great but slowed as the season wore on. He missed time with a tired arm and finished the season with a couple of appearances out of the pen. He ended up 8-7, 4.33 in 112.1 innings. After only giving up one homer last year in Lansing, he gave up 10 in 2010. His walk rate went up a little, too, from 1.4 walks per 9 to a still very good 2.2. He doesn’t strike out many people, and it is a bit worrying that his rate dropped a bit from 6.7 to 6.2 per 9. I’d write off the slightly poorer numbers to the arm soreness and getting up to High-A at age 20. I’d think he’d start next year in Dunedin again, but he ought to move up to New Hampshire at some point.
He started off 2011 in Dunedin, then moved up to New Hampshire and then to Toronto. He made his first start on August 10th. He pitched 5.2 innings in an 8-4 win over the A’s. He would stay in the rotation for the rest of the season, finishing 1-3 with a 3.53 ERA in 10 starts.
He spent all of 2012 in the Jays rotation. He had a 4.85 ERA in 31 starts and a 9-14 record. He didn’t strike out many, just 3.8 per nine innings. It is tough to be successful batters hit .290/.339/.473 with 29 home runs against.
After the season, he was part of the big trade with the Marlins. Henderson missed the first half of the 2013 season with a shoulder issue. He ended up making 17 starts with a 3.53 ERA. 2014 was his last full season in the majors, making 30 starts, putting up a 2.65 ERA and making the NL All-Star team.
That was the end of the good times. He had a shoulder problem in 2015, which limited him to 3 starts. Since then, he’s bounced from team to team. He made 3 starts for the Phillies in 2017, but that’s been it. He has pitched in the Mexican League since then.
Career he has a 27-35 record and a 3.82 ERA in 95 starts.
Happy birthday Henderson. I hope it is a good one.