Hey, a move!
It’s not necessarily a market-mover, but if you were wondering about the value of a solid defensive and receiving catcher in a market without many catching options:
Source: Jason Castro and Twins agree to a three-year, $24.5M deal.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) November 22, 2016
Castro, 29, has reinvented himself in recent years as a defensively-strong, pitch-framing catcher with a light bat, not posting a wRC+ above 88 in any of the past three seasons. He gets a touch above $8 million per year for the defensive value, then, and a bat that is right around what Miguel Montero did last year with the Cubs (83 wRC+).
Assuming Montero’s back issues don’t prevent him from throwing to bases next year, doesn’t the Castro deal make you feel a little better about the Cubs’ commitment to Montero? He gets $14 million from the Cubs in 2017, his final under contract with the team, and provides the potential for a league-average bat, exceptional receiving skills, and solid defense (again, assuming he’s healthy).
As we’ve discussed, Willson Contreras figures to make more starts behind the plate next year than any other Cubs catcher, but Montero will still be a critical piece of the rotation. For the role he’ll play next year, I’m very glad the Cubs have him.