Rangers Updates: Castellanos and Arenado
On Tuesday, Jon Morosi of MLB.com reported updates on two Rangers' targets.
The first Morosi report regarded the Rangers' pursuit of free agent right fielder Nicholas Castellanos, which according to Morosi, remains active as of Tuesday. He then stated the Rangers are "among the favorites to land him."
The Rangers likely would bring Castellanos to Arlington to address first base rather than play right field, even though he has never played an inning at first base in the big leagues. Texas plans to utilize Joey Gallo as their right fielder.
Gallo is a superior athlete to Castellanos and is a better defender in right field. Although Gallo has experience at first base, it's not the best way to utilize his talents. There is also no plan to shift Gallo back to center field.
Adding Castellanos would give the Rangers another right-handed bat in the middle of the lineup that can drive the ball out of the ballpark. The Rangers have done a good job addressing their starting rotation this winter and an addition of Castellanos would help solidify a lineup that struggled in 2019.
Jon Morosi also reported on Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado, who the Rangers have engaged with the Rockies about a possible trade. Unfortunately, it looks like another suitor is gaining headway on landing the Rockies' superstar.
According to Morosi, the St. Louis Cardinals and the Rockies "have begun exchanging names" in their negotiations and talks have "advanced beyond a preliminary stage." The report also states the Rockies are seeking "a combination of Major League talent and at least one prospect."
This helps give an idea on how the Rangers could possibly gain any kind of momentum in the Nolan Arenado sweepstakes. If the Rockies are looking for Major League talent, a package would certainly have to include a nice, young player like Willie Calhoun. A top prospect in the trade package would likely have to include Josh Jung or Sam Huff, who are the Rangers' top two prospects on MLB.com, respectively.
As anyone should expect, the Cardinals are concerned with the opt-out clause in Arenado's contract after the 2021 season. Any suitor for Arenado, including the Rangers, would likely require him to waive or renegotiate his opt-out clause as a part of any potential deal.
The Rangers' chances to land Arenado have been slim from the beginning. It's not surprising to see a ball club with a better farm system making further progress on a deal. If anything, the Rangers' best chance of landing Arenado rests on their willingness to take on the entirety of his contract, which includes $245 million over the next seven years (not taking his opt-out clause into account).
An addition of either Castellanos or Arenado would be fantastic fits for the Rangers and help further them along toward becoming a postseason contender again.
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