Cincinnati Reds next ace is 2017 rookie Luis Castillo

(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

The Cincinnati Reds pitching woes

The Cincinnati Reds aren’t pitching well. Furthermore, the team ranked 29th this year in that department. If they want to become competitive in the near future, the club must improve on the mound. Also, one reason the franchise is lacking there is the youth. With several young guys in the rotation, mistakes will happen.

With that said, be patient with this team. I know it has been a rough couple of years, but “trust the process” and pay attention. Would you rather have a one-year postseason run or a contender for several seasons in a row? Have faith in the prospects, even though that is a dangerous way to get fan’s hopes up. The farm system is already developing into the backbone of this franchise. If you don’t know now, you’ll see it soon enough.

The Reds’ front office has done well over the past couple years to acquire talent. After many mediocre years, they decided to pivot into a rebuild. Furthermore, the team pulled the trigger on deals trading fan favorites away. They were just the right moves to make, even if the trades hurt at the time. One of the players dealt was a lesser known, specifically right-hander Dan Straily.

In 2016, the righty tossed a 3.76 ERA in 191.1 innings. That is pretty impressive considering he pitched a good chunk of games at Great American Ballpark. He was a reliable guy every fifth day. The Reds made good in dealing him for a trio of prospects. At the time, Cincinnati’s farm system was alright. It is one of the variables needed in the franchise-building equation.

Want your voice heard? Join the Blog Red Machine team!

Write for us!

In that trade, the Reds acquired pitching prospects, Luis Castillo, Austin Brice, and outfielder Isaiah White. So far, Luis Castillo has been a gem. Cincinnati has received their next workhorse pitcher.

The Cincinnati Reds next great pitcher

More from Reds News

Finally, the Reds have a young pitcher to lean on. The 24-year old was competitive every fifth day and showed signs of ace potential. With this teams plethora of pitching prospects, it’s nice to see one assert themselves from the rest. His composure and tenacity make him one of the franchise’s most interesting pieces.

In 2017, the right-hander tossed a 3.12 ERA with 98 strikeouts in 89.1 innings. He was able to dominate hitters and had a LOB% of 80.1. Castillo could work on his HR/FB rate, which is 17.2%. Other than that, there really isn’t much to critique him on.

He had a 3-7 record, but that wasn’t all his fault. The team isn’t the greatest around him either, other than Joey Votto. The righty has done well for himself and is asserting himself as the Reds’ number one guy. With Cincinnati in need of a boost on the mound, hopefully, Castillo won’t have strict inning limits in 2018.

Always for a young pitcher, control is the biggest issue. That obviously goes along with the 24-year-old, but he has shown the valuable ability he brings to the Major league club. The young ace is a key cog in the development year that is 2018.

Pitching and defense

For the Reds to get back into contention, they will need to shore up the pitching. The defense was good at #7 in the MLB. Also, the offense was a nice surprise as well. The team got good years out of Scott Schebler, Zack Cozart, Eugenio Suarez, and of course Joey Votto. This club is a mix of veterans and inexperienced players.

Next: Where is Billy Hamilton headed?

The veteran presence will aid the young guys through the tough times in the Major leagues. Youth will learn from their mistakes and become a better player. I think the Reds were more than happy with Luis Castillo’s production. But can he get better? Maybe. If he can hone his control and locate his fastball, the sky is the limit.