Detroit Tigers offenses have never had trouble scoring. It comes with the territory of being a baseball team in Detroit during the 21st century. Many Tigers have gotten off to solid starts, but Nick Castellanos stands out.
Detroit Tigers hitters have so far gotten off to a torrid start. Entering Major League Baseball’s second week, the Tigers offense paces the league with a pristine .300 batting average. Detroit also ranks in the top eight in on-base percentage, slugging percentage and OPS.
The Detroit third baseman is hitting a scorching .385 so far. Obviously this early in the season, everything is based off an extremely small sample size, but Castellanos has been excellent so far.
In four games played, the 24-year-old has two RBI, two runs scored and a double. Those aren’t eye-popping numbers, but they look much better when you consider the third baseman only started three games. His fourth appearance was limited to a late pinch-hitting appearance as manager Brad Ausmus opted to go with Mike Aviles against CC Sabathia.
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However, there is more to Castellanos’ performance than just his stats. In the second game of the season against Miami starter Jose Fernandez, the third baseman chased the ace from the game with a hard-hit, RBI double.
It would seem that Castellanos is developing a habit for knocking talented, young pitchers out of games. In Friday’s contest, the veteran of two full seasons knocked New York starter Luis Severino out of the contest with a single to left field.
What’s more, the 24-year-old finished the game with four hits. Three of his four base knocks came off Severino, a pitcher who impressed last season with a 2.89 ERA in 11 starts as a rookie.
Adding Length to the Lineup
The hot start from Castellanos is certainly a positive sign. Perhaps after two seasons in the Majors, the third baseman is starting to put it all together. After all, he did hit .283 over 2015’s last two months.
Castellanos obviously isn’t going to hit .385, but if he can hit somewhere closer to his batting down the stretch in 2015, he’ll add even more length to an already deadly lineup.
Continued growth by the former first-round pick could potentially give the Tigers six different players (Ian Kinsler, Miguel Cabrera, Justin Upton, J.D. Martinez and Victor Martinez being the others) who could hit at least 20 home runs and drive in at least 80 runs.
Talk about the intimidation factor.