Perhaps no individual stat stands out in Alcantara's profile at first glance, but he's posted a 3.62 ERA and 1.27 WHIP across his last 32 regular-season starts. In 2020, he continued to tack on velocity, adding at least one mile per hour to each of his fastball, sinker and slider. That, at least in part, allowed him to post a 14.0 K-BB% rate across 42 innings, nearly doubling his previous best mark. Even so, Alcantara's reliance on his sinker means his primary approach to getting outs remains via the groundball. This was highlighted in 2020, as he threw his sinker at a 35% clip, induced a 49.1% groundball rate and surrendered 0.9 HR/9. The downside to that approach is modest swing-and-miss, despite possessing elite velocity. To take another step forward, Alcantara will need to get more punchouts, which could occur as he continues to develop his secondary offerings, particularly his slider and changeup.
A fifth-round pick in 2014, Antone was an unheralded prospect but suddenly became the talk of Reds spring training before it was paused. After sitting high-80s/low-90s in 2019, Antone was dialing it up to the high-90s and sitting 95-96 mph, which he credited to offseason weighted-ball training. Cincinnati brought Antone up the first weekend of the season and the right-hander rode that increased velocity and elite spin to a 2.80 ERA and 20.6 K-BB% over 13 appearances (four starts) during the regular season. He gets good sinking movement and keeps the ball on the ground, which is especially important in Great American Ball Park. Further, Antone has a second breaking pitch with distinctive shape to it, helping offset the lack of a true offspeed pitch. The Reds are trimming payroll and Antone looks no worse than fifth or sixth on the depth chart for starts anyway.
We normally do not get breakout seasons from 32-year-old players, but that is exactly what we got from Belt in 2020. His overall upside had long been capped by his splits against left-handed pitching and his home ballpark. San Francisco made some adjustments to the park and did some wind studies, and Belt must have gotten an early advance of the notes because he thrived at home to the tune of a .384/.511/.726 slash line. He had not posted an OPS over .900 at home since the 2012 season. Hitting lefties is still something he struggles with (.115 in 2020), so he has to make the most of his chances against righties as he did with a .350/.456/.659 line last season. Bake in some regression and beware Belt may not be ready for Opening Day after undergoing surgery to remove a bone spur from his heel last October. If healthy, Belt should be a fine Plan C at first base in 2021 heading into free agency.