Tigers' Willi Castro Continues to Evolve
Jason Ross Jr.
Willi Castro's bat has promptly evolved into one of Detroit's most consistent forces since making his season debut on August 13th. There wasn't a spot for the 23-year old infielder on an everyday basis when the Tigers initially called him up in early August.
Niko Goodrum took most of the reps at shortstop this season until a right oblique injury placed him on the 10-day injured list. Insert a wide-eyed Willi Castro, who may still be a work in progress defensively, but has taken considerable strides at the plate.
Entering today, Castro has recorded a hit in 12 of his last 13 games and recorded four multi-hit games last week en-route to claiming the fifth spot on MLB Pipeline's top ten hottest rookies list.
You couldn't ask for better production of late with runners in scoring position. Castro now has five RBI in his last three sparkling performances after his run-scoring single in Tuesday's 8-3 win over the Brewers.
Castro hit .230 batting average in exactly 100 plate appearances a season ago. His notable improvement in 2020 is partly credited to the time that he spent in the offseason working with Cleveland Indians first baseman Carlos Santana, which perhaps birthed a more intent mindset at the plate.
"With a short bat, working with my backhand on both sides, working with my hands on both sides (as a switch-hitter)," Castro said. "Try to stay back, try to feel my feet in a strong position. That's been helping me a lot. Sometimes I get too excited and swing at bad pitches. I'm just focusing on that spot where I want to hit the ball."
Castro's confidence and comfort at the plate appears to be at an all-time high heading into Wednesday's matchup against the Brewers.
Let's take a look at some of Jason Ross Jr.'s quick video hits from Comerica Park on Wednesday:
- Willi Castro looks to continue his offensive tear vs. Brewers
- Jonathan Schoop leaves the fourth inning of Tuesday's win with a right wrist contusion.
- Daz Cameron will make his major league debut.
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