The Detroit Tigers Minor League affiliates seasons are now officially in the books. With another season completed, the time has come for me to announce the 2011 MCB Down on the Farm All-Star Team.
In an effort to reward less talked about prospects, only players that did not receive a call-up to Detroit this season were eligible. While you may recognize some of the names, remember these awards aren’t a pronouncement of the Tigers top prospects. The awards were based heavily upon the best overall statistical season per position.
Similar to previous years, the breakdown of the roster will consist of one player per position, a designated hitter, five starting pitchers and five relievers.
2011 MCB Down on the Farm All-Star Team: 3B Nick Castellanos
Team: Low-A West Michigan Whitecaps
Stats: 507 AB, .312/.367/.436/.803
36 doubles, 3 triples, 7 home runs, 76 RBI, 45 BB and 130 SO
Nick Castellanos was selected by the Detroit Tigers in the first round–44th overall–of the 2010 MLB First-Year Player Draft. The 19-year-old right-handed batter played third base for the West Michigan Whitecaps last season.
Behind the Numbers:
First and foremost, his season slashline was definitely impressive. Early on, Castellanos stumbled out the gate, hitting just .179 in the month of April. His early season struggles became a distant memory though as he went on to hit over .300 every remaining month last season.
Castellanos recorded 46 extra-base hits, including 7 home runs. The high average and gap power continue to back up his middle of the lineup projection. Unfortunately he rarely walked and struck out in over 26% of his trips to the plate. The walk and strikeout ratios were basically the only blemishes to his first professional season of pro ball though. Bottom line, Castellanos was hands down the Tigers best minor league third baseman.
It was pretty hard to tell that Castellanos was just 19-years-old last season. Despite being several years younger than his competition, Castellanos handled himself well. His consistency at the plate and overall numbers far exceeded everyones expectations.
As we’re all aware, third basemen seldom remain at the hot corner once they make it to the show. Because of this, scouts continue to debate Castellanos position down the road. His performance last year did nothing to make you lean one way or the other in that debate either. Regardless of where he ends up though, Castellanos has a bright future ahead of him.
I expect Castellanos to begin the season in Advanced-A Lakeland next spring. Beyond next season, he still projects as a middle of the lineup difference maker.
Next Up: SS
2011 MCB Down on the Farm All-Stars