|Theo Epstein, Jed Hoyer and the rest of the Cubs braintrust have emphasized the organization's need for pitching in its scouting and player-development pipeline. Chicago added two more arms in a trade with the Diamondbacks, acquiring Dominican Summer League righthanders Jesus Castillo and Erick Leal in a deal that shipped speedy outfielder Tony Campana to Arizona.
Campana had been designated for assignment, but due to the unique nature of the 17-year-old righties acquired, we decided to break format and cover the transaction in Trade Central.
|Jesus Castillo, rhp
Age: 17. Born: Aug. 27, 1995 in San Feliz, Venezuela.
Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 165.
Bats: R. Throws: R.
Career Transactions: Signed as international free agent by Diamondbacks, Aug. 27, 2011.
Castillo was Arizona's most expensive international amateur signing in 2011, when he signed for $250,000 from Oswaldo Camacho's program on his 16th birthday. With his August birthday, he was one of the youngest signings in 2011 and pitched the entire DSL season at age 16. Castillo is from Valencia but has also lived in Spain. He used to play soccer, and his athleticism is evident in his smooth delivery, which he repeats well for his age. He has a long, loose arm stroke, a long stride and gets good extension out front. He threw in the mid-80s when he signed, but he now touches the low 90s and has a good changeup for his age, though his breaking ball is still a work in progress. Castillo did post a 5.40 ERA last year, but if he were born a week later, he wouldn't have even been eligible to sign until July 2, 2012, so he's an intriguing arm for the Cubs to take a flier on.
|Tony Campana, of
Age: 26. Bats: L. Remaining Commitment: Under club control for five more seasons, 2013-17 ($483,000 salary in 2012).
Contract details courtesy of Cot's Baseball Contracts.
The 5-foot-8, 165-pound Campana lacks any trace of power, but his speed and glove in center make him a suitable part-timer or reserve. He has swiped 54 bases in 59 attempts in the big leagues and should be able to help another diminutive center fielder, D-backs rookie Adam Eaton, patrol the vast outfields of the National League West. —John Manuel