Apparently Mets GM Sandy Alderson was serious when he put second baseman Luis Castillo and left-hander Oliver Perez on notice in mid-December, saying “if they don’t earn their way on the team, they won’t be on the team.”
Buster Olney of ESPN.com wrote today in his Sunday notes column that the Mets have tried to trade Castillo all winter long and are now internally discussing the possibility of releasing him because no suitors have come forward. Perez might also get the boot if he shows no signs of progress during spring training.
Castillo, 35, batted just .235 with a .337 on-base percentage and a putrid .267 slugging percentage in 299 plate appearances last season. He did not homer and he collected just 17 RBI.
The Mets owe him $6 million this season in the final chapter of a four-year, $25 million agreement that was signed in mid-November of 2007. They would obviously rather move at least part of that salary to another team via trade, but no major league club is going to be interested in adding an aging and unproductive middle infielder, however cheap. Cutting ties, eating his salary and then moving on may be the best course of action.