The Pittsburgh Pirates announced the signing of catcher Austin Hedges on Tuesday afternoon. They needed to make a corresponding move on the 40-man roster to open up a spot, but didn’t announce one right away. According to the team’s transaction page, infielder Diego Castillo has been designated for assignment.
Castillo was part of the deal to acquire Clay Holmes from the New York Yankees during the 2021 season. He debuted in the majors in 2022, and spent most of the season with the Pirates. The 25-year-old hit .206/.251/.382 in 96 games, with 13 doubles, 11 homers, a 26.5% strikeouts rate and a 4.9% walk rate.
Castillo mostly played shortstop coming up through the minors. The Pirates gave him a decent amount of time at shortstop, second base and right field, along with turns at first base.
This winter in Venezuela, the Pirates asked Castillo to use the whole field more at the plate, while also hoping he could get more work at different positions. He mostly played shortstop while putting up a .342 average and a 1.001 OPS in 22 games.
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.