Trade market news: #Reds RHP Luis Castillo, who had a 2.73 ERA from June 1 onward, already is drawing interest from teams across @MLB. The Reds are willing to engage in talks on the 28-year-old, who will be eligible for free agency after ‘23. @MLBNetwork— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) November 8, 2021
This is a puzzler, in a way; Luis Castillo, as noted, is just 28, comes with two more years of team control, and had a terrific second half of 2021 after a poor start.
It appears, with the Reds’ waiving of Wade Miley and the Cubs claiming him, and now this with Castillo, that they are retrenching for 2022. I wouldn’t necessarily call it “tanking,” but it seems clear that almost every Reds veteran is available.
Castillo, as noted, got off to a terrible start in 2021. At the end of May he had a 7.22 ERA and 1.777 WHIP in 11 starts. This was inexplicable; he wasn’t injured, and these numbers weren’t even close to being in line with his pre-2021 performance.
Then, as Jon Morosi wrote on Twitter, Castillo had a 2.73 ERA (and 1.204 WHIP) after June 1, that period covering 22 starts and 135⅓ innings, in which he struck out 144.
Those numbers got him to a 3.98 ERA and 1.364 WHIP for the season, a bit above his career norms. His K rate was down a bit (9.2 per nine innings, compared to 10.0 pre-2021) and he did lead the NL in walks (tied with Zach Davies!), but overall that was a 4.7 bWAR season, something that could fit in anyone’s rotation.
Castillo made $4.2 million in 2021. He’s arb-eligible in 2022 and you’d think that salary is likely to double, so let’s be generous and call it $9 million for next year.
For a guy who is essentially a 3 bWAR pitcher, that’s a great value.
In previous installments about guys I think the Cubs should pursue, I have posted salary figures or prospects who could be dealt. But not knowing if this is a full tanking by the Reds or not, I honestly don’t know what it would take to have them trade Castillo within the division.
So I’ll open it up to your suggestions. Castillo would be a great add to the Cubs rotation and with two years till he’s a free agent — and he’s just 28, as noted — maybe the Cubs could sign him to a contract extension.
What say you? What would it take to acquire Luis Castillo?
This poll is closed
... the Cubs should trade for him no matter the cost in prospects
... the Cubs should trade for him, but only at the "right" cost in prospects
... the Cubs should not trade for him
Something else (leave in comments)