Monday, March 21, 2011

Castillo agrees to Minor League deal

Veteran Luis Castillo agreed to a Minor League contract with the Phillies, although nothing is official. Castillo was released by the Mets on Friday after some unfavorable seasons in Queens. The Phils showed interest immediately, and Castillo agreed to the deal nearly instantly after clearing wavers.

Castillo will compete with Wilson Valdez, Josh Barfield, Pete Orr, Michael Martinez and Delwyn Young for the second base job. Many of his competitors are having tremendous springs, so it's not an easy road ahead for Castillo.

If Castillo makes the club at any time, the Phillies will owe him just $414,000 of his $6 million salary. They'll owe him even less if he never suits up for the Fightins.

It's a classic low-risk, high-reward situation for the Phillies. Castillo's had plenty of success in this league, and a change of scenery might be just what he needed.

Castillo is an NL East man. After breaking into the league in 1996 with Florida, Castillo played for the Marlins through 2005. After a brief stint with Minnesota in 2006 and part of 2007, he was traded back to the East when the Mets acquired him. Now Castillo, a career .290 hitter with 370 stolen bases and 1,889 hits will look to continue his Major League career with the Phillies in a division that's been kind to him throughout his career.

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