New York Yankees Should Trade For Luis Castillo

New York Yankees, Jordan Montgomery

The New York Yankees recently took a blow to their rotation when the news dropped that starter Domingo German was going to miss the first 63 games of the MLB season. The suspension was in relation to a domestic abuse case from last season, something that German was rightfully suspended for. The MLB is looking to make sure that they don’t tolerate domestic abusers, and it’s seen names like the former Cubs SS Addison Russell and current Astros closer Roberto Osuna get lengthy suspensions for it. With German’s absence the Yankees will have to hope for production from a mixture of guys like JA Happ and Jordan Montgomery at the 5th spot, but what if the Yankees decided to do more? Like the Evil Empire has done time and time again, I believe the Yankees should go all out and make everyone hate them even more and get the young star, Luis Castillo.

Castillo’s Star Power

Luis Castillo is a 27-year-old power pitching starter for the Cincinnati Reds, a team looking to add some offensive depth. He broke out in 2019, posting a 3.40 ERA in 190.2 innings and 226 strikeouts and a 4.1 fWAR. He had a fantastic season, especially pitching in the Great American Ballpark where it’s 8th in Ballpark Factor Home Run rate. The young righty has dazzling pitches, with his fastball clocking in at an average of 96.4, a slider that opponents only hit .204 against, and his money pitch, the changeup. His changeup is the pitch he throws the most, throwing it 31.6% of the time. Opponents only hit .128 off of it with a minuscule .199 slugging %. He threw the pitch 998 times and only gave up 5 home runs off his changeup, meaning hitters had a .5% chance of hitting a home run off of him. Castillo’s got fantastic stuff, and it gives pitching coach Matt Blake a lot to work with.

Can Matt Blake Make Him Better?

Matt Blake is a fantastic choice for the Yankees, and he can definitely improve Luis Castillo. In 2019 Luis Castillo saw a decline in performance in the second half, with a 4.78 ERA after the all-star break. The reason for that could be how many innings he had pitched, as it was the most in his career, however, I believe it also has to do with his fastball. Luis Castillo relies heavily on his fastball too, as he threw it 28.9% of the time, but hitters slugged .504 off of it in 2019. While he does throw it hard, it doesn’t have a great spin rate, making it easier to hit. This is something we’ve already seen him notice as he throws a variant of the fastball in his sinker. It’s vastly superior to his fastball, clocking in at 96.5 MPH and despite the high batting average against (.283), it has a mere .414 slugging percentage against. Either improving his fastball or using his sinker more could allow for Castillo to improve and become a true ace.

Ballpark Favorability

There’s room to believe that the conditions at Yankee Stadium make it a great place for Castillo to pitch in. This is aided by the fact that the Great American Ballpark is 8th in Hits Rate according to Ballpark Factor while Yankee Stadium is dead last. This could lower his 6.6 H/9 and allow fewer baserunners. This is true for home runs too, as while the Great American Ballpark was 8th in Home Run Rate, Yankee Stadium was 25th. Castillo had given up 22 home runs for a 1.0 HR/9, and even that could go down in New York. The environment favors Castillo more and can allow him to pitch even better as a Bronx Bomber.

Let’s Make A Deal

Yankees Recieve: RHP Luis Castillo and $10 million

Reds Recieve: LHP Jordan Montgomery, RHP Deivi Garcia, 2B/SS/OF Tyler Wade,              C Anthony Seigler, and LHP JA Happ

The Yankees would receive the star starter Luis Castillo to give them the greatest rotation in baseball hands down alongside with salary relief. The Reds would receive two MLB ready starters, star prospect Deivi Garcia, MLB ready infielder Tyler Wade, and a  catching prospect in Anthony Seigler, as the Reds need a catcher of note for the future, and Seigler could be MLB ready in 2-3 years.

Ths deal would be insane and could alter the paths of these two teams for a long time, but at the same time, it would be so fun to watch the Yankees wreak havoc on all of baseball.