Departing after just 3 2-3 innings to the tune of a 12.27 ERA, 22-year-old left-hander Fabio Castro is back where he belongs, ironing out the kinks in the minor leagues.
The live-armed youngster has a bright future with the Phillies, but it will have to wait. Castro has struggled with his command since spring training, walking five in his brief stay with the big club. He also struck out five, offering a glimpse of his potential as a situational reliever.
A demotion to Double-A is the best thing that could happen to him. In Reading, the door is open for the Phils to provide him with plenty of action, perhaps as a starting pitcher. The Phillies could simply jettison a veteran starter to make room in the rotation. He’s missed a lot of time and needs to catch up. Between last season, when he saw only limited action as a Rule 5 acquisition, and the scattered action so far in 2007, Castro will benefit most from an uninterrupted stay in Double-A. His future is still very bright.
Meanwhile, the Phillies haven’t officially announced Castro’s replacement, but there’s a strong possibility it will by Ryan Madson, who’s been on the disabled list retroactive to May 4. Madson’s return and Castro’s demotion would leave the team without a left-handed reliever on the 25-man roster.
Reading Eagle links: Keeping with the Reading theme, beat writer Mike Drago features former Braves prospect and current Reading pitcher Bubba Nelson, who’s been a solid free agent addition. Also, Brian Smith caught up with Phillies GM Pat Gillick, who was on hand in Reading Wednesday night, possibly scouting left-handed reliever Mike Zagurski. When asked how he plans on addressing the bullpen, Gillick said "I’m not optimistic that that’s going to happen externally. It’s going to have to happen internally."