Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
July 30, 2007
BASEBALL: Good News, Bad News

Terrible news on one front, as the Braves appear close to nailing down a deal for Mark Teixeira. The deal isn't coming cheaply, as they are apparently parting with their top 3 prospects, but few prospects turn into a guy as good as Tex, who is 27, a good glove and a career .264/.489/.358 hitter even away from Texas, plus the top guy in the deal is Jarrod Saltalamaccialalaimachalachaia, who was basically expendable with the presence of Brian McCann.

The good news (I think)? The Mets got Luis Castillo, cheap:

Minnesota gets catcher Drew Butera and outfielder Dustin Martin....Butera is batting a combined .231 with six homers and 26 RBIs this year at Double-A Binghamton of the Eastern League and Class A St. Lucie of the Florida State League.

Martin is hitting a combined .289 with five homers and 52 RBIs for St. Lucie and the Golf Coast League Mets.

Butera seems to be basically a light-hitting catcher like his dad Sal...Castillo's defense isn't what it was, nor his base stealing, and he never had any power, but he can still hit .300 and get on base a decent amount; he's batting .304/.352/.356 this year, .302/.368/.371 over the past six seasons. Acquiring Castillo is clearly a no-confidence vote in Ruben Gotay, at least in the short run, and he's likely an upgrade on Gotay's shaky defense and anybody else's offense.

For what it's worth, Castillo's Zone Rating is near the low end in the AL (and way below Damion Easley), and his Range Factor is well below the league average, supporting the idea that he doesn't cover much ground any longer. It may be worth asking whether Easley would have been a better option, although Castillo's bat is a good deal more reliable at this stage. Castillo is also well-suited to hit second, allowing Lo Duca to bat lower when he returns. Castillo's contract is up at the end of the season, so there's no extra obligation here.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 7:00 PM | Baseball 2007 | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

Butera seems to be a backup catcher at best, and Martin seems semi-promising, but probably the fifth or sixth best OF prospect in the Mets organization. So at worst, it's no loss. I hope that Willie will be open-minded about giving Gotay some ABs pretty quickly if Castillo shows signs of being another Tommy Herr or Mike Bordick, though.

Posted by: Jerry at July 30, 2007 7:32 PM

I'm not crazy about the deal in terms of 2B starting, but Castillo gives them a decent pinch-hitting lefty bat. That may end up being a bigger deal than anything else.

Posted by: Mike at July 31, 2007 7:01 AM

I think, an unnecessary trade-the "platoon" of Gotay/Easley would have been fine and has MUCH more power-OF/Pitching help was needed

Posted by: Luis at July 31, 2007 7:21 AM
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