The Colorado Rockies have yet to make any major splashes when it comes to free agent signings this offseason. With the Major League Baseball lockout still in effect, the Rockies are unable to make any moves that would impact their 40-man roster.
With that in mind, we will begin a series looking at players who have been linked to the Colorado Rockies this offseason and examine what their projected numbers might be.
What kind of offensive production could Nick Castellanos bring to the Colorado Rockies?
When Nick Castellanos opted out of his contract with the Cincinnati Reds, he immediately became linked to the Rockies and their desire to get more power out of their outfield in 2022. Jim Bowden even went so far as to say in his article for The Athletic (subscription required) that the first thing the Rockies should do after the lockout ends is sign Castellanos to a five-year, $126 million contract.
So what would that mean for the Rockies? The soon-to-be-30-year-old outfielder has primarily played right field since the start of the 2018 season, so something would have to be sorted out with Charlie Blackmon already anchoring right field at 20th and Blake. However, with the designated hitter coming to the National League, there would certainly be options to insert both Blackmon and Castellanos into the lineup.
For the 2022 season, FanGraphs is projecting Castellanos to have the kind of power the Rockies are looking for in their lineup.
Using Steamer projections, Castellanos is projected to slash .270/.330/.485 with 29 home runs and 95 RBI.
Using ZiPS projections, Castellanos is projected to even improve upon those numbers, slashing .287/.340/.534 with 31 home runs and 96 RBI.
Of course, these projections would not yet take into account if Castellanos was playing half his games at Coors Field where he has a career slash line of .520/.586/1.000 in 29 plate appearances (25 at-bats). He has a pair of homers and seven RBI to his credit in games played in Denver.
Would Castellanos boost Colorado’s offensive production? It’s very likely, but his contract will come at a cost that we will have to wait and see if the Rockies are willing to pay.