Castellanos now a free agent after opting out of Reds contract
It was a move that even those high in the bleachers could see coming; Cincinnati Reds catcher Nick Castellanos has walked away from his contract; worth a staggering $34,000,000 over two years.
After somewhat of a mixed 2020 season, the 29-year-old rebounded in 2021 enjoying the kind of form that saw a much-improved Reds performances, albeit losses against stronger opposition.
It is understood that the player believes that he can get a better deal elsewhere, not necessarily more money, but more value in terms of the number of years that are offered on the contract.
Peak of his career fast approaching
The next few years are make or break for the player in terms of challenging for a world series, after previous spells at the Detroit Tigers and Chicago Cubs, though getting his next move right is key for the player.
What is likely to happen, is that the Reds will revisit the conversation with the player, during close-season and at the very least, make him a qualifying offer, however, should he decide to sign for another team, it will leave a substantial hole in their lineup.
Internally, the Reds have the likes of Tyler Naquin, Max Schrock, Nick Senzel, or Aristides Aquino waiting in the wings, though a trade could well be another possibility unless a free agent becomes available.
His form in 2021 saw the player named as a National League All-Star – some accolade, though his impressive record of 38 doubles, a triple, 34 home runs and 95 runs over a period of 138 games more than warranted this.
Where could Castellanos end up?
Should he decide not to renegotiate with the Reds, there are potential options in terms of teams who could express an interest. The Miami Marlins present an interesting option, with Floridian city not too far from where the player grew up, though the team does have a promising core of young talent.
Meanwhile, should he want a shot at the World Series, the Chicago White Sox may present an interesting option, with a vacancy going for a star right fielder. However, even as a free agent, signing him would mean that it stretches their budget considerably.