Diamondbacks News

What can we expect from Wellington Castillo in 2016?

By Christopher Gaine
Jun 15, 2015; Anaheim, CA, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks designated hitter Yasmany Tomas celebrates with Wellington Castillo (7) after hitting a solo home run in the sixth inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 15, 2015; Anaheim, CA, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks designated hitter Yasmany Tomas celebrates with Wellington Castillo (7) after hitting a solo home run in the sixth inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /
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The emergence of Wellington Castillo was perhaps the most pleasant surprise the Diamondbacks experienced last year. The team traded perennial disappointment Mark Trumbo to Seattle in exchange for Castillo, who seemingly came out of nowhere to hit 17 home runs in 80 games.

This was a career year for Castillo, who had never hit more than 13 home runs in a season before coming to the desert. But what can we expect from him this season?

34 home runs in 2016 would be nice, but that seems to be the exception rather than the rule. Castillo has some pop, but his track record would indicate that he probably isn’t the next Mike Piazza– although he can hit the occasional dinger.
Castillo does, however, possess a track record indicating a capable offensive presence for extended periods of time. He was solid in his first full season as a starting catcher with the Cubs in 2013, as he batted .274/.349/.397 with eight home runs and 32 RBI in 113 games. His OPS+ of 106 and bWAR of 4.5 indicated that this was an above-average season for Castillo offensively.

He then regressed offensively after this season with a .237/.296/.389 slash in 110 games in 2014 and a .162/.213/.279 line in 30 games last year before being traded to Arizona. His bWAR fell to 1.8 in 2014 and to -0.3 before the trade last season before going back up to 1.4 in 80 games with the Diamondbacks.

Defensively, Castillo has a higher celling than his 80 games with the Diamondbacks indicated. He had 19 defensive runs saved above average in 2013 and 5 in 2014, before posting -1 with the Diamondbacks last season.

Expect Wellington Castillo to perform closer to his 2013 stats. Hitting 17 home runs in 80 games is tough for anyone not named Goldschmidt, Harper, or Stanton to do on a consistent basis. A return to 2013 stats would still be good news for the Diamondbacks, as they would be getting a player who is capable of getting on base and playing solid defense.

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