2 things Reds GM Nick Krall got right by trading Luis Castillo to the Mariners and 1 thing he got wrong

Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Luis Castillo (58) pumps his fist.
Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Luis Castillo (58) pumps his fist. / Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY
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Late last night, the Cincinnati Reds traded starting pitcher Luis Castillo to the Seattle Mariners. The transaction ended weeks of speculation about whether or not Castillo would be traded at the deadline and where the right-hander would ultimately end up.

In return, the Reds got a haul of top prospects. Seattle's top prospect, shortstop Noelvi Marte, was part of the deal. So was shortstop Edwin Arroyo and right-handed pitchers Levi Stoudt and Andrew Moore.

There was legitimate fear throughout Reds Country prior to the trade, as so many fans thought that Cincinnati would botch this deal. To be honest, Reds GM Nick Krall hit a home run. Let's look at what Krall got right, shall we?

Reds trade with the Mariners for Luis Castillo did not include Mike Moustakas.

Relax, Reds Country. While Mike Moustakas is still on the Cincinnati roster (for now), he wasn't part of the trade for Luis Castillo. It was critically important for Nick Krall and the Reds front office not to cheapen their return for Castillo by including Moustakas.

Shedding Moustakas' contract would've been a breath of fresh air for the Castellini family. But Castillo was the Redlegs' best trade chip at this year's deadline. Adding Moustakas to the trade would've been like having a 1909 Honus Wagner baseball card and folding it in half before the auction.

Moose has been an utter disaster since signing with the Reds back in 2019. The veteran third baseman now looks to be a step slow on the field and can't catch up to the fastball in the batters' box. Moustakas' four-year/$64M contract may have officially passed Eric Milton's free agent deal as the worst in franchise history.

The Cincinnati Reds are not building for next season, but for 2024 and beyond. Unfortunately for the Cincinnati faithful, the 2023 campaign will be more about Joey Votto's swan song than winning baseball games. The Reds did the right thing by not including Moustakas in the trade with the Mariners.

Reds trade with the Mariners for Luis Castillo included a Top 50 prospect.

Noelvi Marte was the key piece of the Cincinnati Reds return. Marte is widely viewed throughout baseball as a Top 50 prospect. Most outlets even viewed Marte as a fringe Top 20 prospect prior to the start of the 2022 season.

Marte has done nothing this season to jeopardize his standing as the 20-year-old has a slash line of .275/.363/.462 with 19 doubles, 15 home runs, and 55 RBIs at High-A Everett. Keith Law of The Athletic (subscription required) ranked Marte as the 11th best prospect in baseball prior to the season and believes he's no more than two years away from making his major league debut.

MLB Pipeline rated Marte as the 18th best prospect in baseball. The outlet wonders if Marte will end up at third base or possibly even center field by the time he makes it to the big leagues. No matter where Marte lines up, it's assumed that his bat will play.

In addition to Noelvi Marte, the Cincinnati Reds also secured the services of another top shortstop prospect in Edwin Arroyo. The M's second-round pick in 2021, Arroyo is having quite the season at Low-A Modesto. Arroyo is hitting .316/.385/.514 and has 13 round trippers with 67 runs batted in.

Throw in pitching prospect Levi Stoudt and Andrew Moore, and this is quite the haul that Nick Krall brought back in return for Luis Castillo's services. Stoudt will probably make his way to the bigs next season and Moore can touch 102 mph on the radar gun.

Reds trade with the Mariners for Luis Castillo did not include an outfielder.

This may not be entirely true based on where Noelvi Marte eventually lines up defensively, but the one thing that the Cincinnati Reds did not receive in return for Luis Castillo was an outfield prospect. That's something that many fans throughout Reds Country have been clamoring for.

The Reds farm system is noticeably light on elite-level outfield prospects. Mike Siani is arguably the team's best center field prospect and is more of a glove-first outfielder. The Reds top two position players in the pipeline are both infielders, though many assume Matt McLain might begin shagging balls in the outfield.

The Reds recently converted Rece Hinds, a second-round pick in 2019, into an outfielder. Unfortunately yet another injury looks to have ended Hinds' season. The Reds also has former first-round pick Austin Hendrick and international signee Yerlin Confidan working their way up through the Cincinnati farm system.

The one outfielder currently in the minors that could be a difference-maker is Allan Cerda. The youngster has scuffled a bit since making the transition to Double-A, so fans will have to monitor his progress throughout the remainder of the season.

Cincinnati still has two very nice trade chips in Tyler Mahle and Brandon Drury. While neither player will bring the type of return that Castillo did, one could argue that Mahle will bring at least one Top 100 prospect. Perhaps Nick Krall has his sights set on a outfield prospect in future trade negotiations.

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