Fence Hopping: Why Miguel Castro should be on the Toronto Blue Jays Opening Day roster
Six days ago, I opined the Toronto Blue Jays were crazy for considering right-handed pitching prospect Miguel Castro for their Opening Day roster.
But after watching Castro dominate for 2.2 innings on Tuesday night against the New York Yankees, I’m starting to reconsider that bold stance.
I like to think I’m an open-minded person so today I will cross the fence to discuss why the Blue Jays would be crazy not to take Castro north.
I’m not going to waste time going over my entire previous argument but to summarize my biggest concern with pushing Castro to the major league bullpen was the lack of innings he’d receive. The goal should be for him to pitch 110-120 innings this season and working out of the ‘pen it’s unlikely he hits that target.
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I still think in the ideal scenario Castro can pitch half a season in the minors to build his innings then is moved to the Jays’ bullpen for the season’s second half. However this would risk having to use a less effective (and possibly mediocre) option in the meantime, which based on the Jays position on the win curve (parlayed with their lack of depth) could end up being the difference between a playoff spot or sitting on the outside looking in.
Now that Aaron Sanchez has been somewhat officially penciled into the rotation, the Jays more than ever could use a big-armed reliever to help solidify the back end. Can Alex Anthopoulos justify bringing Kyle Drabek, who is out of options, north while leaving Castro in Dunedin to dominate Florida State League hitters for a month or two?
Sure, there are service time issues to deal with, but to a certain degree pitchers become a depreciating asset as they age. With the amount of injury and attrition at the position, it’s no guarantee a pitcher will even be around six or seven years from now. This is extra year of control is theoretically (and likely in practice) much for valuable for hitters, which is why there is such a big deal being made about Kris Bryant‘s semi-saga with the Chicago Cubs.
So why not bring Castro up? His makeup, in limited looks, has been off the charts as he doesn’t seem intimidated by major league hitters. While a guy like Sanchez had the reputation as a nibbler in the minors, Castro throws nothing but strikes. He doesn’t seem like the type of player who would be rattled by having an off-speed pitch out of the park but rather one who would throw the exact same offering to the very next batter.
What will GM Alex Anthopoulos choose to do? I have no idea. But I am sure of one thing – flags fly forever. And Miguel Castro on the Opening Day roster gives the Toronto Blue Jays the best chance of making the playoffs in 2015.