Detroit Tigers: Three players who should not be traded this offseason
For all the things that went wrong for the Detroit Tigers, the one thing that seemed to go right—at least towards the end of the season—was Nicholas Castellanos’ development into a middle-of-the-order run producer.
Castellanos has flirted with breaking out at the dish in the plate in the past.
He logged a 118 wRC+, a .212 ISO and a .350 wOBA in 447 plate appearances in 2016. However, his 2016 season was cut short due to injury. The 25-year-old also got off to a slow start in 2017.
In the first half of the season, Castellanos turned in a 25.1 strike out percentage with a 95 wRC+, a .746 OPS and a .318 wOBA. He also hit .248 with a .313 on-base percentage and a .433 slugging percentage.
However, the slugger turned things around significantly in the second half with a stat line befit of an All-Star.
Castellanos made more contact, and made it more often as his strikeout percentage dropped to 16.9 in the second half.
His walk rate actually dropped as well, going from 7.8% to 4.2%. However, things seemed to work out for the ex-third baseman.
He notched a 129 wRC+, a 882 OPS and a .367 wOBA. He also logged a .299 batting average, a .329 on-base percentage and a .553 slugging percentage.
Notably, Castellanos upped his ISO from .186 in the first half to a .254 mark in the second half that checked in at 28th in the Majors during the time period.
The reality is that the Detroit Tigers are going to need someone to hit behind Miguel Cabrera next season.
While stats and the team’s record may not be at the top of the priority list, having a productive offense would help Detroit speed up the offense significantly.
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Having a resurgent Cabrera and the productive Castellanos hitting in the heart of the order would go a long ways towards the Tigers’ offense turning things around.