I think most every Tiger’s fan will agree that Nick Castellanos is a rather frustrating player.
First, he came up as the Tiger’s #1 prospect. He was untouchable for years. They shifted his position around just to accommodate him at the big league level (they were able to shift back after the Prince trade). People have been down on him because of his low batting average. People have been down on him because of his defense. But the Tigers keep playing him daily, and when he plays like he has lately, it makes them look kinda smart.
So who is the real Castellanos? Do the stats tell us anything?
We will start with the easy part, his defense. I won’t bore you with too much info because I think it might get boring early. But let’s look at some stats anyway.
This might surprise some of you, but Castellanos is leading the American League in Fielding % at 3B this year, which is exactly why that stat means literally nothing. Basic stats will show us that he generates 2.62 outs per 9 innings while the league average 3B will generate 2.66, probably also surprising that he is so close to average. His total field zone rating estimates that he cost the Tigers 10 runs so far this year and will add 3 more to that total by end of season. This equates to about -1 win in terms of WAR. For comparison 0 is average, and last year he was at a staggering -27 runs, almost -3 wins in WAR.