At long last, the struggle is over. I’m taking about the struggle of watching the Red Sox commit over $70 million to an international free agent and having him sit on the bench. Cuban phenom Rusney Castillo has been optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket.
Castillo was signed to a 7-year $72.5 million contract last season during the international free agent signing period He hadn’t played live baseball in over a year, but many teams, especially Boston, felt that the outfielder still showed great promise.
Castillo made his debut towards the end of last season and hit .333 for the last place club. This year, he started the season in Triple-A. At the time of his call-up, Rusney Castillo was batting .293/.341/.440.
Jun 4, 2015; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox pitcherSteven Wright
(35) delivers a pitch during the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports
Castillo’s baseball IQ still raised questions on whether or not e=he can make it in the Majors. But the fact is, its too soon to tell. Castillo has shown that he can be a five-tool player. He’s hit for average, power, flashes his speed and has shown that he can play OK defense all while still adjusting to American baseball as well as the abnormal dimensions of Fenway Park.
Castillo was not getting regular at bats in Boston, and that wasn’t doing him any favors. It’s probably best for him that he goes to Pawtucket and gets regular at bats under his belt while relearning in-game situations.
Steven Wright was also optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket to make room for new Red Sox reliever Justin Masterson. Wright proved to be a valuable long man in the bullpen for Boston. In 11 games, 4 starts, Wright posted a 4.15 ERA and struckout 24 batters in 43 1/3 innings.
Before going on the DL, Masterson owned a 6.37 ERA in seven starts with the Red Sox. Masterson is returning from nursing a should that had tendinitis. He made three rehab starts with Pawtucket where he went 0-2 with a 3.29 ERA. He had 12 strikeouts in 13 1/3 innings pitched. With the arrival of Eduardo Rodriguez, Masterson is set to go in the bullpen and likely be used as a long-man and a righty specialist.
Catcher Erik Kratz was claimed off waivers last week from the Kansas City Roylas right before the injury to starting catcher Blake Swihart. Kratz, a right-handed catcher has been part of five big league clubs including the Pittsburgh Pirates, Philadelphia Phillies, Toronto Blue jays and most recently the Kansas City Royals. In 180 major league games, Kratz has exhibited some power in his bat hitting .217/.270/.400.