Alcantara (2-0) fired four scoreless innings in Triple-A Nashville's 1-0 win over Iowa on Thursday, allowing two hits and a walk while recording three strikeouts.
The 25-year-old bounced back nicely from a rough outing versus Omaha his last time out, one in which he allowed four earned runs on six hits and a walk over three innings. Alcantara has been nothing if not intriguing during a long minor-league career that dates back to 2011, posting a sub-3.00 ERA in five different professional stops and exceeding the 5.00 mark in four other stints, including both of his major-league tenures in 2016 and 2017. He projects to remain with the Sounds for the time being, but injuries or poor performances at the big-league level could certainly earn him a callup, especially if he continues performing well in Nashville.
Alcantara was outrighted to Triple-A Nashville on Wednesday, Julian McWilliams of The Athletic reports.
Alcantara passed through waivers unclaimed and will begin the 2018 campaign back in the minors. The right-hander appeared in eight games for Oakland last season, posting an unsightly 7.13 ERA and 1.42 WHIP with a 12:12 K:BB over 24 innings split between the bullpen and rotation. He will be utilized as organizational depth this year.
Alcantara allowed an earned run on a hit -- a solo home run -- and a walk over one inning in Sunday's 5-1 Bay Bridge Series exhibition loss to the Giants. He also recorded a strikeout.
The solo blast he allowed to Pablo Sandoval in the eighth served as the only blemish of the afternoon for the Athletics' relief corps, which fired 4.1 scoreless frames otherwise. Alcantara has allowed an earned run apiece in each of his last three trips to the mound, including two homers overall. Manager Bob Melvin attributes a good deal of his pitcher's struggles to a lack of a diversified arsenal that he can deploy alongside his mid-90s fastball, Curtis Pashelka of The Mercury News reports. "He's got to start throwing his breaking ball for a strike and having a secondary pitch," Melvin said of Alcantara. "That's been the issue with him. He's got a good fastball but at the major league level if they know it's coming, they'll turn it around."
Alcantara (1-2) was the pitcher of record in Friday's 5-3 loss to the Rangers, covering 4.1 innings and conceding four runs on five hits and two walks. He struck out two batters during the 80-pitch outing.
Injuries to Sean Manaea and Jharel Cotton have paved the way for Alcantara to stick in the rotation for three straight turns, but after impressing in the first two of those outings, the rookie endured some turbulence Friday. He was ultimately chased from the contest in the bottom of the fifth inning, as he allowed a leadoff single to Drew Robinson before yielding a two-run home run to Shin-Soo Choo. While his season will end on a sour note, Alcantara should have the opportunity to compete for a rotation spot with the Athletics next spring, though it seems more likely he'll open the 2018 campaign as a starter for Triple-A Nashville.
Alcantara has been confirmed as Friday's starter against the Rangers, Joe Stiglich of NBC Sports California reports.
Scheduled starter Jharel Cotton was shut down for the remainder of the season Tuesday, so Alcantara will receive one last turn in the rotation. He faces a tough road matchup with the Rangers in Arlington, so his fantasy appeal for Friday's start is nearly nonexistent.
|10/1/2017 vs Texas|
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|Minor League Pitching Stats|
|2010||R-Dsl Red Sox||5||3||3.30||13||13||1||0||0||60.0||61||31||22||1||2||8||34|
|2011||R-Gcl Red Sox||1||1||0.75||9||9||0||0||0||48.0||23||5||4||0||3||6||36|