Almost immediately after the Cubbies signed Ben Zobrist to play 2nd base, they traded away Starlin Castro, as projected. The Cubs’ second baseman/shortstop landed in the absolute perfect location. Starlin was traded to the Yankees in exchange for Adam Warren and Brendan Ryan. Castro was the starting shortstop for the Cubbies from 2010-2014, until he split time between short and second in 2015. With the new kids Kris Bryant and Addisson Russell taking over in Chicago, it was time for Castro to go, and the Yankees have been looking for a starting second baseman, but want to stay young at the same time. Castro is under contract through 2020, as he will fit perfectly into that infield.
Castro is a three time all-star, who finished 5th in the NL ROTY Award voting at 20-years-old in 2010. In 2011, he led the NL in hits with 207, while batting .307 after a league leading 674 at bats (led the NL three years in a row). He has shown speed (over 20 steals twice), hitting for average (over .290 three times), health (played in at least 134 games since 2010), and a good glove (below average at short, but saved 4 runs at second in 2015). Starlin has never hit more than 14 homers, but has produced over 30 doubles 4 times in his career. His power numbers should help him climb into the .800’s of OPS, as he will now be playing in Yankee Stadium, which is always in the top 10 in run production, compared to windy cold, Wrigley field.
Castro has got $53 million left on his contract and will become a unrestricted free agent after the 2020 season, so the Yankees should have no problem affording that. With Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius also controllable for the next few seasons, and Greg Bird to take over at 1st with Texeiria’s departure after 2016, the young infield should be the foundation of the next great Yankees team. Starlin may be no Cano, but he is a 3-time all-star that will get the job done.