Nick Castellanos, Third Base
Through 73 games, Nick Castellanos is clearly the most improved member of the Detroit Tigers offense. He may even be the most improved player in all of baseball.
Entering his third season as a full-time starter, the 24-year-old is hitting .295 at the plate, to go along with a .331 on-base percentage and a .505 slugging percentage. If the numbers hold through the end of the season, they would all be well above the player’s previous career highs.
Additionally, Castellanos has also showed significant improvements in the power department, with 13 home runs already. Last season it took him 154 games to reach 15 home runs.
The improvement of Castellanos has added significant length to an already potent lineup. Additionally, the production of the former top prospect has helped make up for a struggling Justin Upton and an injured J.D. Martinez.
Last but not least, Castellanos has continued to improve in the field. Since 2014, the Florida native has steadily become better as a defender. From a defensive metrics standpoint, Castellanos has gone from posting dreadful numbers to respectable stats in a number of categories.
Considering how far he’s come as a fielder in such a short amount of time, it wouldn’t be a shock to see him develop into one of the league’s better defensive third baseman. It may have sounded out of the question a few years ago, but if Castellanos can continue to improve at a steady rate, the sky is the limit.