After watching Rusney Castillo showcase his skills in Miami on Saturday, the Astros may be preparing to take another look at the Cuban defector. Jeff Luhnow says the Astros may bring in the 5′ 9″, 200 pound outfielder for a private workout.
The Astros are one of several clubs that are interested in Castillo. According to MLB Trade Rumors, the Yankees, Red Sox, and Phillies are a few of the teams that have already scheduled private workouts with Castillo.
The recent success of other Cuban players coupled with the fact that their salaries do not count towards a team’s international pool allotment makes players like Castillo a very attractive commodity. Castillo has been awarded Free Agent status by MLB and is expected to sign a contract within the next couple of weeks.
Castillo, 27, is projected to follow a path similar to that of fellow countryman Yasiel Puig — in that he should start out in the minors but could be brought up before the season is over. A speedy outfielder with power, Castillo is the type of player that could make an immediate impact for the Astros. But with so many teams in the mix, it’s hard to imagine Jim Crane and company winning the bidding war for his services.