Key Stats: Starlin Castro will be 22 when the season starts this year, and will be going into his 3rd year of ball at the major league level. A career .304 hitter, who stole 22 bags and chipped in 10 HR’s at the legal drinking age is generally the kind of thing that turns heads. He was able to increase his AVG, wOBA, ISO, and line drive rates, while cutting down on his strikeouts.
Skeptics Say: Castro doesn’t have a lot of power, and his speed is probably going to decrease as he gets bigger and fills out. No one is doubting his ability to hit for average, but all things considered, Castro may only really contribute AVG and Runs in a 5×5 league. He might hit more homers than last year, but that might come with less steals too. He is currently going in the 3rd round of drafts (MockDraftCentral)… is that really where you want to pick up someone who will hit .300 and might deliver 15/15?
Peer Comparison: Starlin Castro and Elvis Andrus are separated by a coin flip on draft boards this year. Both guys can hit for .300 and contribute runs, but would you rather get someone who can help you dominate in steals, or chip in steals and HR’s? Not only are close on draft boards, but they are going in the same round in mocks. Is there better value later in the draft?
Not for nothing, but while the averages of Players A and B aren’t anything to write home about they are far from the point where we worry about them killing our team. In my opinion, they also offer a bit more punch across everything. I also can’t seem to figure out how WAR is calculated, but that’s not really important. What is important is that players A and B looked like they certainly held their own against two 3rd or 4th round picks. When you consider the difference in price draft day is 4 or 5 rounds, or $5 or $6, then I don’t feel so bad letting Castro or Andrus go and rolling with Asdrubal Cabrera (Player A) or Jimmy Rollins (B). Of course, if we are talking a keeper league, Throw Rollins out the window and do what you can to grab Castro or Andrus. They are young and people are excited about them for a reason.
Team Outlook: The Cubs are rebuilding and no one is expecting much of them this year. Castro is by far their most exciting player in the starting lineup day in and day out.
Projection: I like Castro way more in a keeper league than I do for a redraft league. I’m scared that his continuing growth and development (physically) is going to put him in a place where he will hit for average and score runs, but he won’t quite have the speed to get to 20 steals or the strength to hit more than 13 HR’s. I’m not willing to spend a 3rd or 4th round pick on a guy who will only contribute majorly to two categories. His line may look pretty similar to last year, which is fine, but not to me at his current cost.
.300 AVG, 10 HR, 87 Runs, 70 RBI, 19 Steals, .340 OBP and a .780 OPS in 600 AB’s.