Yankees cut former promising Boston Red Sox infielder, sign utility piece to compete in spring training

mlb: boston red sox at washington nationals, jeter downs, yankees
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Yankees have been shuffling their roster over the past few weeks, signing a few spring training invites to compete. Earlier this off-season, they brought in Oscar Gonzalez to support the outfield and former Boston Red Sox promising utility infielder Jeter Downs.

However, the Yankees cut Gonzalez this past week and did the same with Downs on Friday, making room for 26-year-old utility man Diego Castillo.

Downs, 25, never got an opportunity to showcase his value with the Yankees. He’s played 20 MLB games, hitting .182/.260/.273. In all likelihood, Downs was never going to see an MLB baseball diamond, given his lack of production in the past. However, he makes room for a 30-year-old pitcher who has tossed 268.1 MLB innings.

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The Yankees Looking for Utility Support With Castillo

Castillo has played 97 MLB games, hitting .205/.250/.380. He spent 124 games with Arizona’s Triple-A club last season, hitting .313/.431/.410, including three home runs and 72 RBIs. He was excellent in the minors, actually spending several years with the Yankees’ farm system between 2015–2021. He left off on a high note but was pursuing MLB opportunities and has struggled to latch on.

However, Castillo has the capabilities to play first base, second base, third base, shortstop, and both corner outfield positions. That type of utility is valuable, and the Yankees may want to stash him in Triple-A for the 2024 season just in case of emergencies.