Giants: Pros and cons of signing Nicholas Castellanos
Due to his midseason trade, Castellanos was not eligible for a qualifying offer, which means that the team that signs him will not have to forfeit a draft pick.
Draft pick compensation typically scares off some teams, but the lack of any draft pick tied to Castellanos’ name is especially appealing to a rebuilding team like the Giants.
In signing the corner outfielder, the Giants would be able to improve their 2020 roster and beyond without hurting the team’s draft strategy next June.
In the batter’s box, Castellanos brings an immediate middle-of-the-order threat to a team that does not have enough. Since 2016, Castellanos has posted a .286/.336/.504 line with a 120 OPS+ across 2,454 plate appearances. The Giants do not have any players who can reliably produce at that level.
Along these same lines, Giants team president Farhan Zaidi has stated his desire to add more power to the lineup, and Castellanos brings a potent bat to the table.
During that same four-year stretch, Castellanos averaged 24 home runs and 41 doubles per season. Clearly, he is not merely a gap-to-gap hitter. His ability to hit the long ball would be a breath of fresh air for the Giants.
A concern with any potential power hitting target is whether his power will play at the expansive dimensions of Oracle Park.
Comerica Park, where Castellanos spent parts of seven seasons, is not a hitter-friendly park either. In fact, he was critical of the park’s dimensions in an interview with 97.1 The Ticket this past June:
"“This park’s a joke. It’s to the point where, how are we going to be compared to the rest of the people in the league for power numbers and OPS and slugging and all this stuff, when we’ve got a yard out here that’s 420 feet straight across to center field? We get on second base, third base, and (opposing players) looking like, ‘how do you guys do this?’ We play 81 games here, I don’t want to hear it about your two you hit that are questionable.”"
Castellanos may not have had a favorable opinion of Comerica Park’s dimensions, but he produced an .806 OPS in his career at the Tigers’ home ballpark, so the 420-foot fences did not hold him back.
Lastly, the Giants projected starting outfield includes Mike Yastrzemski and Alex Dickerson. Both are left-handed hitters, and as a right-handed bat, Castellanos would give the Giants much-needed balance in the outfield.
Now let’s look at the cons.