Don’t forget to check out the latest episode of the BN Podcast, friends. I’ll be out of pocket for a little while this morning as I take The Little Girl on a parent-supervised (look at me, I’m a parent supervisor!) trip to the pumpkin patch.
- The Dodgers, amid their playoff run, had time to dump an intriguing outfielder this week: Alex Castellanos. Although he’s not related to top prospect Nick, Alex was a solid prospect in his own right a few years ago in the Cardinals’ system. He was traded for Rafael Furcal, and proceeded to destroy the upper levels of the minors out west, as many prospects do. He got the tiniest of look-sees with the Dodgers in 2012 and 2013, but relative struggles in the minors this year probably did him in as far as long-term plans go. To be clear, Castellanos is no longer a traditional prospect, and is very likely not more than a future bench guy (at best). He turned 27 late this year, and hit just .257/.347/.468 for AAA Albuquerque (that isn’t great for that ballpark). When outfielder Mike Baxter popped up on the waiver wire from the Mets this week, the Dodgers preferred Baxter to Castellanos (a quick look reveals that Baxter has a lower ceiling, but has demonstrated that he could be a decent bench bat at the big league level already), and designated the latter for assignment. From here, Castellanos very likely hits the waiver wire.
- Why did I devote a lengthy first Bullet to Castellanos? Well, he’s the kind of guy I could see the Cubs considering in their early offseason roster shuffling. He costs just a few bucks and a roster spot to grab, and then you have over a month to decide whether he’s worth keeping on the roster all offseason (you could even try to grab him, chat him up like a bar hotty, and then waive him in the hopes that he’ll clear and you can retain him on a minor league deal later in the year). Although his 2013 season was down, he hit .320/.386/.573 in 2011 between AA and AAA, and then .328/.420/.590 at AAA in 2012. He’s got a decent walk rate (9.1%), and doesn’t strike out too much to concern you. He bats righty, which is something the Cubs could actually be lacking in the outfield at the AAA/MLB level. Moreover, he played all over the outfield this year, and played all over the field in 2012. While it doesn’t seem likely, the possibility of a super utility type is there – at least, it’s “there” enough that it might be worth a waiver claim and then a short-term evaluation process in Arizona. It’s a flyer, and it’s one of the cheapest kinds – not unlike the one the Cubs have already taken with Mat Gamel.
- Jesse Rogers looks at the last two managerial candidates to interview, Rick Renteria and Dave Martinez. Features a cameo from David DeJesus!
- Patrick Mooney digs into Dave Martinez, who interviewed yesterday, and the way the Tampa Bay Rays have conducted themselves over the past half decade.
- Arizona Phil discusses the latest Instructional League – and intrasquad – action, featuring appearances from a host of pitchers on whom we all want to have eyes: Arodys Vizcaino, Juan Paniagua, Jefferson Mejia, and Jen-Ho Tseng. Remember: stats from these kinds of games are virtually meaningless. What matters is how the guys look, and the fact that they’re getting experience/innings.
- BP’s Harry Pavlidis chats on a variety of topics, including Cubs prospect bits (C.J. Edwards remains a mid/back-rotation projection type of guy, Juan Paniagua offers more hope than Dillon Maples, Javier Baez could be good defensively eventually), and his usual fare of PitchF/X and the like.
- If there were a significant, public-facing contingent of Cubs fans espousing the “we play the game the right way” BS message that Cardinals fans/media are putting out there about their team vis a vis the Dodgers, I’d be utterly embarrassed. Go play golf, Cardinals. On Neptune.