Much of the Reds’ offseason has been focused around moving players (i.e. trading Raisel Iglesias, non-tendering Archie Bradley) rather than adding, and eyebrows were raised last month when it was reported that Luis Castillo’s name was coming up in trade talks. There wasn’t any indication that those talks were serious, however, and Reds VP/general manager Nick Krall issued a firm denial on the subject to reporters (including MLB.com’s Mark Sheldon). According to Krall, speculation about a Castillo trade is “completely false. We intend to have [Castillo] as a member of our rotation for 2021.”
Castillo and the Reds recently agreed to an arbitration-avoiding $4.2M contract for 2021, and the right-hander is still under team control through 2023 thanks to two more years of arbitration eligibility. Between this affordability, the three years of control, and Castillo’s front-of-the-rotation ability, there isn’t really any pressing reason for Cincinnati to move Castillo. Since the Reds seems to be focusing on cutting payroll this winter, an argument could be made that Castillo could be attached to a deal that would get a bigger contract (i.e. Mike Moustakas, Nick Castellanos) off the books, but that would seem like an awfully extreme move. One would imagine Castillo wouldn’t be traded unless the Reds were reversing course entirely and now looking to rebuild.
More pitching notes from around the league…