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Daniel Castro struggled in a short 2018 cameo with the Rockies

You’re reading the 2018 edition of Ranking the Rockies, where we take a look back at the season had by every player to play for the Rockies in 2018. The purpose of this list is to provide a snapshot of the player in context. The “Ranking” is an organizing principle that’s drawn from Baseball Reference’s WAR (rWAR). It’s not something the staff debated. We’ll begin with the player with the least amount of rWAR and end up with the player with the most.

★ ★ ★

No. 36, Daniel Castro (-0.7 rWAR)

The Colorado Rockies needed infield help early in the season. With flashier prospects in the system who weren’t necessarily ready and who weren’t a good fit for a short-term role, the Rockies called on Daniel Castro. He is a journeyman minor league infielder, and in 18 games with the Rockies in 2018, he looked like exactly that.

Versatility. Check. Castro only played second base in 2018, but he offered the Rockies the option if they needed somebody to plug-in somewhere else. Playing the game the right way? You bet. The organization praised the professionalism and hustle he brought. Light hitting and ultimately limited production? Check, unfortunately.

Daniel Castro slashed .174/.191/.261 in 18 games played (13 OPS+). Because he was up to fill in for an injured DJ LeMahieu, he started 13 of those games. Those numbers obviously are not great and they certainly created a problem in the starting lineup, even if it was only for a couple weeks.

This is probably who Castro is. At age 25, he has shown he is a productive Triple-A player who is overmatched in the big leagues. Look at the numbers above, and then note that Castro slashed .307/.342/.414 in 69 games in Albuquerque this past season. Every organization has those players, and they have their place over the course of a long season. But you will usually hope your team has better options when they need them.

If Castro gets another crack with the Rockies or another big league club, there’s always a chance he would break through and be something more. It seems more likely, however, that he will remain a good minor league player who plays sparingly in the big leagues as a fill-in guy. As for his 2018 contribution, we’ll probably remember him most for struggling so much that the Rockies cleared the way for a Garrett Hampson debut later in the year.