MLB Rumors: Nick Castellanos Interests Giants, Marlins, More Teams in Free Agency

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVNovember 18, 2021

AP Photo/Paul Vernon

Free-agent outfielder Nick Castellanos is reportedly receiving interest from multiple teams on the open market.

According to MLB Network's Jon Morosi, the San Francisco Giants and Miami Marlins are two of the teams known to be pursuing the 2021 All-Star and Silver Slugger award winner.

The 29-year-old Castellanos has spent the past two seasons with the Cincinnati Reds and previously enjoyed stints with the Detroit Tigers and Chicago Cubs.

Free agency comes at an ideal time for Castellanos, as he enjoyed a career year offensively in 2021. His slash line of .309/.362/.576 were all career highs, as were his 34 home runs.

Castellanos also drove in 100 runs and scored 95 runs in only 138 games.

It represented a huge step up for Castellanos, who hit a career-low .225 with 14 homers and 34 RBI in the COVID-shortened 2020 season.

Castellanos' first true breakout occurred in 2017 with the Tigers when he hit .272 with 26 homers, 101 RBI and an American League-leading 10 triples. He remained productive over the next couple of seasons, but he reached a new level in 2021, earning an All-Star nod for the first time.

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Both the Giants and Marlins would benefit greatly from signing Castellanos, although they find themselves in very different positions in the National League.

The Giants are coming off a surprisingly dominant season, as they led Major League Baseball with a 107-55 record and won the NL West, although they fell to the rival Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League Division Series.

Meanwhile, the Marlins finished fourth in the NL East with a 67-95 record and have missed the playoffs in 17 of the past 18 seasons.

The Giants are returning some core offensive players in Brandon Crawford, Brandon Belt, Evan Longoria and Mike Yastrzemski, but catcher Buster Posey announced his retirement and Kris Bryant is a free agent.

San Francisco would conceivably love to re-sign Bryant after he performed so well following his trade to the Giants from the Cubs, but if the Giants are unable to re-sign him, Castellanos could be a quality replacement.

While the Giants are a team poised to contend for a World Series, Castellanos has ties to the Miami area, which could make the Marlins an attractive option as well.

Morosi noted that Castellanos attended Archbishop McCarthy High School in Southwest Ranches, Florida, which is only about 25 miles from the Marlins' home ballpark.

Legendary New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter is now the Marlins' CEO, and he is playing a big role in building the franchise from the ground up.

The Marlins shockingly reached the playoffs in 2020 under Jeter's guidance, and while they took a step back last season, they have a chance to rebound in 2022 thanks largely to a young and talented starting pitching rotation.

Castellanos would be the centerpiece of the offense and give the Marlins some much-needed pop in the middle of the order.


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