Oct 16, 2015; Kansas City, MO, USA; A general view of a glove and baseball during batting practice prior to game one of the ALCS between the Kansas City Royals and the Toronto Blue Jays at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports
Israel Alcántara is but a blip in Red Sox history, but I had the opportunity to witness his dysfunctional play at both Fenway Park and McCoy Stadium in Pawtucket. Izzy was supposed to provide some power for a desperate power shortage Red Sox team and initially did just that. As Dr, Phil would say: “past behaviors are indicative of current and future behaviors.”
Izzy simply was a dangerous item for any team and had an extensive history of on-field behaviors that would make Ramirez look like Charlie Hustle himself. At Pawtucket, I would witness a cavalier attitude on fly balls with the fans wondering just when (or if) will Izzy get motivated to go after this one? Being in close proximity of the dugout, the occasional shouting match would ensue with a pitcher whose earned run average suddenly bumped up over a ball that should have been flagged down.
In Boston little changed. Jimy Williams had enough and finally benched Izzy after a particularly slow boat action in the outfield. Eventually, Izzy was sent packing only to return the following season for another brief appearance.
Izzy was not done and drifted, after further ruin in North America, into Taiwan baseball where he was nicknamed “Al-Qaeda”. That should give some telling details of his personality.
I will cut Izzy some slack since the kid could hit. At Pawtucket, he led the International League in home runs on two occasions and had a nice power swing from the right side. But Izzy was in his late 20s and should have displayed a better understanding of being a professional. This was a wasted talent. If Izzy was banging out 30+ home runs a season, they would have kept him.