Welcome to the 2021 edition of Ranking the Rockies, where we take a look back at every player to log playing time for the Rockies in 2021. 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 lowest rWAR and end up with the player with the highest.
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No. 27, Ryan Castellani: 0.1 rWAR
Hey! We made it to the positives!
That’s about where the good news ends for this particular piece. Right-handed pitcher Ryan Castellani made a single start for the Rockies in 2021 against the San Francisco Giants on May the 4th in Game 2 of the doubleheader. He started the year in Triple-A Albuquerque and was recalled to replace an injured Carlos Estévez. Antonio Senzatela was placed on the IL on May 1 and was replaced by Lucas Gilbreath, so it all evened out in the end.
During Castellani’s start, he pitched 3 1⁄3 innings and allowed two runs on five hits with four walks and two strikeouts. Both runs came off the bat of Brandon Belt via a two-run homer in the first inning. As far as specifics go, it wasn’t a great game for the former second round pick. He allowed a lead-off baserunner in every inning, and two via a free pass (one walk and one hit-by-pitch). He also allowed three extra-base hits (two doubles and a home run). The four walks certainly didn’t help, either.
That game on May the 4th would be Castellani’s last game in the majors in 2021. He was sent back to Albuquerque the following day and was officially DFA’d on June 24 and outrighted on June 30 after clearing waivers.
Castellani had a promising start to his career in 2020 after having elbow surgery during the 2019 season. He pitched four no-hit innings in his MLB debut on August 8, 2020 and overall had a decent 2020 season, ranking 13th in our 2020 edition of Ranking the Rockies. Of his 10 starts, he allowed four or less runs in seven of them. He got blown up against the Dodgers on September 18 (4 1⁄3 IP, 4 H, 8 R, 7 ER, 2 HR, 1 HB, 3 BB, 1 K), but overall did alright. He struggled with walks towards he end, allowing 18 in his last four starts.
It’s hard to say what the future will hold for Castellani, but given that he was outrighted to Triple-A and Peter Lambert is back, his time might be up in Colorado.