Luis Castillo has one year and $6 million left on his contract, but told Mike Puma of the New York Post that he doesn’t expect to be back with the Mets next season after losing his starting job at second base to 20-year-old rookie Ruben Tejada.
I feel this offseason they can work out something. I need to play. This has been a tough year for me. I got hurt and I came back and played a couple of games and then I saw the moves they were doing, letting the young guys play. Maybe 20 more days here and I’ll be prepared to work out for next season. I want to see if I can get a chance to play next year because I’m going to be a free agent after that and I want to have a good year and put up good numbers.
Castillo told Puma that he came to the conclusion that he’s done in New York after talking to the front office about his status, which while no doubt true may not mean a whole lot if the current front office isn’t actually in charge in a month. Of course, regardless of who’s running the Mets after this season they’ll probably be interested in unloading Castillo.
As was the case last offseason, if the Mets want to move Castillo they’ll have to either eat a large portion of his remaining salary or swap him for another undesirable contract.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.