The San Diego Padres have acquired C Jason Castro from the Los Angeles Angels in exchange for RHP Gerardo Reyes.
The Padres have few holes offensively, and they cleared up one of them when they acquired Mitch Moreland today from Boston to be the designated hitter. Their biggest problem is behind the plate, with career .200 hitter Austin Hedges having a .614 OPS. While Hedges is good defensively, San Diego needs a replacement, and Castro is a fine defender. While I wouldn't call Castro a great, or even good hitter, he is better than Hedges. Castro hit 13 home runs with a 103 OPS+ last year. He has a strikeout problem, with a 30.8 K% over the past five seasons, and he has struck out over 100 times in five seasons, although Castro has only reached 500 Plate Appearances once.
Castro, 33, has hit two home runs with a .192 average and an OPS of .707 in 62 Plate Appearances for the Angels this year. In his career for Los Angeles, the Houston Astros and Minnesota Twins, Castro has 88 home runs with a .231 average and a .703 OPS in 3084 Plate Appearances.
A disappointing season for the Angels has led to them being sellers this year. Another former all-star in Tommy La Stella was dealt to Oakland, and now Castro is gone. Overall, signing Castro and trading him after 18 games isn't bad. Reyes has not played in the majors this year, and he debuted last year. In AAA last year, Reyes struck out 61 batters in 45.1 innings with a 3.57 ERA. When called up, Reyes allowed a bunch of runs but he had a 13.2 K/9. With the Angels having a much weaker bullpen than the Padres, Reyes should find a spot.
Reyes, 27, had a 7.62 ERA with 38 strikeouts and a 3.41 FIP in 26 innings for the Padres last year. He allowed just 24 hits but walked 11 batters. His fastball averages 97 miles per hour, and he can touch 100 mph.