The Boston Red Sox invested in Cuban talent Rusney Castillo just over two years ago. They put up a hill of cash for a player that most of the league had never heard of. The reason why was simple, they saw potential in Castillo.
The Red Sox believed that he could be a future provider for their team. He advanced through minor league ball swiftly, but his career took a turn when he got his first look at major league pitching. Castillo struggled deeply.
In a total of 336 plate appearances, he is posting just a .262 batting average. He is not putting up the numbers the Boston Red Sox were hoping. Three years after signing a $72 million deal, he did not turn into a star for the Red Sox, according to ESPN.
Boston may still be regretting the deal deeply. The clock is ticking for Castillo’s days with the Red Sox. They are still in the process of picking up the pieces, and figuring out how to regroup. It was not one of their smartest, or most beneficial investments.
Behind the plate he struggled, and defensively, his instincts were sometimes questionable. It is not like he needed time to develop into a better player either. Castillo is no 20-year-old breaking into the MLB, he is turning 30 in July.
Castillo did arrive and Red Sox spring training camp, but he will likely not be making the cut on the team. Boston could be taking a loss on Castillo and settling for a small trade in the future. He may not be getting more time with the Red Sox and neither will be fellow Cuban native Yoan Moncada.
Last season Boston called Moncada up to the big leagues. Like Castillo, he struggled making contact at the plate, and was a costly man on the team’s roster. Boston parted ways with him last season. He ended up on the Chicago White Sox.
Giving up Moncada may have been worth it for Boston. Last season their pitching was decent but it was far from perfect. They came to the realization that having one dependable ace was not enough. They needed another, and that is when they turned their interest to Chris Sale of the White Sox.
Sale, the left hander could give the Red Sox starting five some serious stability. In order to get Sale, the Red Sox made the decision to trade-off Moncada. Although he could have just had a few off-games with Boston last season, he did not provide. The Red Sox did not want to wait for him to develop either.
Offensively, it will not be the end of the world if the Red Sox do not have Moncada’s bat. They have a strong blend of young talent on their team, including Andrew Benintendi, and Mookie Betts. While the Red Sox are approaching their first season without the swing of David Ortiz in years, they will be crossing their fingers that those two players can create some productivity behind the plate.
Last season the Boston Red Sox were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs, will their upcoming season go differently? Was the trade of Moncada the right decision by Boston, and where will Castillo end up? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Commentary by Cody Macleod