The Cubs have designated infielder Sergio Alcantara for assignment, per a team announcement. His spot on the 40-man roster will go to veteran reliever Mychal Givens, whose previously reported one-year deal has now been formally announced by the team.
Claimed off waivers out of the Tigers organization in Feb. 2021, Alcantara wound up appearing in 89 games with Chicago — most of which came after the team had stripped down the roster with a July fire sale that saw Kris Bryant, Javier Baez and Anthony Rizzo traded (among others). The 25-year-old Alcantara logged 255 plate appearances with the Cubs but managed only a tepid .205/.303/.327 batting line during that stretch — his first extended look at the MLB level. He’d previously had a brief 10-game, 23-plate appearance cup of coffee with Detroit in 2020.
In addition to that lackluster showing in the big leagues, Alcantara owns a pedestrian .261/.340/.317 batting line in 822 plate appearances at the Double-A level. He did hit .305/.447/.451 in a small sample of 103 Triple-A plate appearances in 2021, but that’s an outlier relative to his overall body of work in the minors. Offense, however, has never Alcantara’s calling card anyhow. He’s regarded as a plus defensive player at shortstop who can also handle second base and third base. He’s also walked in 11.1% of his minor league plate appearances against a 17.1% strikeout rate, showing solid bat-to-ball skills and a good knowledge of the strike zone.
An above-average runner with a strong throwing arm and good defensive skills on the whole, Alcantara could potentially be of interest to clubs around the league as they evaluate bench options for the expanded 28-man roster early in the season. He has a minor league option year remaining as well, so he can provide some additional bench flexibility throughout the season. The Cubs will have a week to trade Alcantara or attempt to pass him through outright waivers.