Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Minaya moves to upgrade Mets

With the trading deadline about to end, the Mets traded for a second baseman who'll become a free agent at season's end. The trade relegates the Met starter with the highest batting average, Ruben Gotay, to the bench.

The new Met, 31-year-old Luis Castillo (pronounced ca-STEE-yo), has National League experience. He played with the Marlins from 1996-2005 before he was traded to the Twins for pitching prospects Travis Bowyer and Scott Tyler. Castillo's seven years older than Gotay.

The Mets gave up two minor leaguers for Castillo, catcher Drew Butera and center fielder Dustin Martin. Both were with the Mets highest Class-A team in St. Lucie.

Castillo's batting average isn't as high as Gotay's. In 123 at-bats Gotay's hit .350 and in his last seven games was hitting .438. whereas, in 340 at-bats Castillo hit .304 and in his last seven, .308.

Hitting out of the number two slot for the Twins, Castillo's On Base Percentage (OBP) was .356, 12 points fewer than his career average. Gotay's 2007 OBP is .382 and, for his career, .315.

The Mets got Castillo as much for his glove as his bat. When he played with Florida in 2003, 2004, and 2005 Castillo won a Golden Glove at second base. They wanted him, Mets GM Omar Minaya said, because of how much ground he covers.

Castillo's 2007 Fielding Percentage is .992; he's only made three errors in 377 chances and has turned 48 double plays. Gotay's Fielding Percentage is .973. He's also made only three errors in 111 chances and has turned 12 double plays.

Fielding Percentage is calculated by dividing a player's total putouts and assists by his total putouts, assists, and errors.

Castillo's Range Factors, which is an indicator of his defensive skill is 4.63, which is lower than what it was in his three Golden Glove seasons. Gotay's is 4.61.

New York Times reporter Ben Shpigel wrote today that Gotay has "limited range and trouble making the double-play pivot."

In an article written yesterday that appeared on MLB.com, Anthony DiComo wrote "Despite working diligently on his defense with coach Sandy Alomar, Gotay was not the defensive player the club wanted." The article also contained this statement from Mets GM Omar Minaya:
"We pride our team as being pitching and defense," Minaya said. "Castillo is one of the best second basemen in baseball."

Mets manager Willie Randolph was a six-time All-Star second baseman.

No comments:

Post a Comment