Alcantara called up to Cubs for two days

OMAHA, Neb. -- It came a little sooner than he expected, but Chicago Cubs prospect Arismendy Alcantara will make his major league debut when he's called up to the majors for two days in place of Darwin Barney, who's going on paternity leave.

"It's exciting to be in the big leagues, to get called up," Alcantara said after Triple-A Iowa's 7-6 loss to the Omaha Storm Chasers on Tuesday.

Alcantara has been a rising prospect in the Cubs' system over the past two seasons but really came into his own this year. After Tuesday's leadoff double against Omaha, Alcantara has 46 extra-base hits this season, including 10 home runs, 11 triples and 25 doubles. He's hitting .307 after going 1-for-4 on Tuesday.

"It's one of my dreams," Alcantara said. "Just going to keep focused and do my job."

Alcantara, 22, was signed as an international free agent in 2008 as a shortstop but moved to second base when he and Javier Baez teamed up at Double-A last season. To further help his cause, he has played 11 games in center field this year, including Tuesday night's game. After the Iowa Cubs lost 7-6, in a game that featured several ejections, Alcantara was told he was going to Cincinnati to join the Cubs for games there on Wednesday and Thursday.

"They called me into the office and I didn't know what was going on after that crazy game," Alcantara said. "They said, 'Congratulations, you're getting called up.'

"I'll take it easy and just play my game and see what happens."

The Cubs have already told him it's only for two days, until Barney's paternity leave is over. The Cubs return to Chicago for their final series before the All-Star break starting Friday. Until then, Alcantara is a big leaguer. Then he'll play in the Triple-A All-Star game next week.

"I feel great," he said. "I feel excited. It's all players' dreams to play in the big leagues."