Jason Castro
Jason Castro Astros spring training 2015.jpg
Castro at spring training in 2015
Houston Astros – No. 18
Catcher
Born: (1987-06-18) June 18, 1987 (age 34)
Castro Valley, California
Bats: Left
Throws: Right
MLB debut
June 22, 2010, for the Houston Astros
MLB statistics
(through June 4, 2022)
Batting average.228
Home runs96
Runs batted in323
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Jason Michael Castro (born June 18, 1987) is an American professional baseball catcher for the Houston Astros of Major League Baseball (MLB). He previously played for the Minnesota Twins, Los Angeles Angels, and San Diego Padres. After playing college baseball at Stanford University, he was selected by the Astros in the first round of the 2008 Major League Baseball draft (#10 overall). Castro made his big league debut with Houston in 2010. He was selected to the 2013 All-Star Game, serving as a reserve catcher.

Early life

Castro was born in Castro Valley, California,[1] and played high school baseball at Castro Valley High School.[2] He played junior varsity basketball at Castro Valley High School for the legendary Coach Burns.

Castro attended Stanford University, where he played college baseball for the Stanford Cardinal. He was named the club's most valuable player his junior year.[3][4] After his sophomore season in 2007, he played collegiate summer baseball for the Yarmouth–Dennis Red Sox of the Cape Cod Baseball League, where he batted .341 in 39 games,[5] was named the starting catcher for the East Division All-Star team,[6] and helped lead the Red Sox to the league championship.

Minor leagues

Castro was selected by the Astros in the first round (tenth overall) of the 2008 Major League Baseball draft.[7] Castro started in Single-A for the Tri-City ValleyCats in 2008. He was promoted to play for the Class AA Corpus Christi Hooks on June 7, 2009[8] after playing in Advanced-A for the Lancaster JetHawks and played his first game for the team on June 10. He also played for the United States national team in the 2009 Baseball World Cup in Nettuno, Italy.[9]

Castro was selected to play for the United States team in the 2009 All-Star Futures Game in St. Louis. In the game, he threw out a runner and hit a three-run home run.[10] He was ranked 53rd on Baseball America's list of "Top 100 Prospects" in 2009.[11] Shortly after the Futures Game, the Astros sent Castro home early from the Arizona Fall League so that he could rest for the 2010 season.[9]

Major leagues

Houston Astros

Castro with Chia-Jen Lo for the Houston Astros in 2013
Castro with Chia-Jen Lo for the Houston Astros in 2013

On June 20, 2010, the Astros promoted Castro to the MLB from the Class AAA Round Rock Express. He made his MLB debut on June 22, 2010, at Minute Maid Park against the San Francisco Giants. He singled off Tim Lincecum in his first career at-bat.[12] Castro hit his first major league home run on June 24, 2010, against Matt Cain.

On March 2, 2011, while playing in a spring training game against the Detroit Tigers, Castro suffered a knee injury while running to first base. He underwent surgery two days later on March 4 to repair his torn anterior cruciate ligament and a damaged meniscus. As a result, he missed the entire 2011 season.

On June 13, 2012, while pinch-hitting for Xavier Cedeño, Castro grounded out to Joaquin Arias to record the last out for Matt Cain's perfect game. He played 87 games in the 2012 season, finishing the year with a .257 batting average, 6 home runs and 29 RBI.[1]

Castro blocks a pitch during spring training in March 2015.
Castro blocks a pitch during spring training in March 2015.

On May 20, 2013, Castro was awarded the honor of being American League Player of the Week.[13] He earned his first All-Star Game selection that season as a reserve catcher, but did not appear in the game. He led the Astros with a .350 OBP. He set club catcher records with 63 runs, 18 home runs (16 of which were hit as a catcher, tying John Bateman's club record — two were while playing as a DH), and a .485 slugging percentage. In September, he had surgery to remove a cyst from his knee and missed the rest of the season. He played 120 games that year.[14]

After the 2013 season, Castro completed the degree that he had started at Stanford. When he was drafted, he was 25 credits shy of the degree. He had returned to Stanford in the 2010 offseason to begin taking the rest of the courses, but he was delayed by rehabilitation from his 2011 injury.[15]

Before the 2014 season, Castro signed a one-year contract with the Astros worth $2.45 million. Before the 2015 season, he signed another one-year contract with the Astros, worth $4 million.[1] In 2015, he batted .211.[16]

In 2016, he batted .210.[16]

Minnesota Twins

On November 30, 2016, Castro signed a three-year contract worth $24.5 million with the Minnesota Twins.[17] In his first season with the Twins, Castro hit .242 with 10 home runs and 47 RBIs in 110 games.

On May 16, 2018, it was revealed that Castro was diagnosed with a torn meniscus in his right knee, which required season-ending surgery.[18] In 2018 he batted .143.[16]

In 2019, Castro played in only 79 games for the Twins due to sharing time with Mitch Garver, who had a breakout year. He hit .232 with 13 home runs and 30 RBIs.

Los Angeles Angels

On January 7, 2020, Castro signed a one-year, $6.85 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels.[19]

On July 24, 2020, Castro made his Angels debut as a Opening Day starting catcher. With the Angels, he batted .192.[16]

San Diego Padres

On August 30, 2020, the Angels traded Castro to the San Diego Padres for Gerardo Reyes.[20] In 27 games split between the Angels and Padres, Castro batted .188/.293/.375 with two home runs and 9 RBI in 80 at-bats.[21]

Return to Houston

On January 22, 2021, Castro signed a 2-year, $7 million contract to return to Houston.[22]

In the 2021 regular season, he batted .235, and .180 against left-handlers.[16] On defense, he caught stealing 13% of runners, catching 4 runners while yielding 27 stolen bases.[16]

On October 19, in Game 4 of the American League Championship Series (ALCS) versus the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park, Castro singled home Carlos Correa in the top of the ninth inning off Nathan Eovaldi for the game-winning run. The final score was 9–2, tying the series at 2–2.[23] Prior to Game 4 of the 2021 World Series, Castro was removed from the Astros roster due to COVID-19 protocols, and was replaced for the rest of the series by Garrett Stubbs.[24]

Personal life

Castro married Maris Perlman in late 2012. They met at Stanford, where Perlman played lacrosse.[25] The couple founded Castro's Kids, a Houston-area literacy program.[26]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c "Jason Castro Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved August 3, 2014.
  2. ^ Rusty Simmons (March 30, 2005). "It's easy to see that catchers are rising stars / Six rated among nation's top 40". SFGate. Retrieved August 22, 2013.
  3. ^ [1] Archived August 10, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "Scout.com: 2007–08 Honor Roll No. 1: Jason Castro". Stanford.scout.com. June 28, 2008. Archived from the original on December 19, 2014. Retrieved August 22, 2013.
  5. ^ "2007 Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox". thebaseballcube.com. Retrieved July 13, 2019.
  6. ^ "2007 Cape League All-Star Rosters Announced". capecodbaseball.org. Retrieved July 13, 2019.
  7. ^ "Astros take Castro in first round of Draft | MLB.com: News". Mlb.mlb.com. May 24, 2013. Retrieved August 22, 2013.
  8. ^ "Minor League Notebook: Castro promoted to Class AA – Houston Chronicle". Chron.com. June 9, 2009. Retrieved August 22, 2013.
  9. ^ a b "Catcher Jason Castro wraps up eventful season". Corpus Christi Hooks. November 8, 2009. Retrieved August 3, 2014.
  10. ^ "World Futures 7, U.S. Futures 5 (Final Score) on MLB Gameday". MLB.com.
  11. ^ "Prospects: Rankings: Top 100 Prospects: Top 100 Prospects: No. 41-60". BaseballAmerica.com. February 24, 2009. Retrieved August 22, 2013.
  12. ^ "Jason Castro's FIRST MLB HIT and highlights of FIRST MLB GAME". YouTube. June 22, 2010. Archived from the original on December 21, 2021. Retrieved August 22, 2013.
  13. ^ "Players of the Week | MLB.com: News". Mlb.mlb.com. May 24, 2013. Retrieved August 22, 2013.
  14. ^ "Jason Castro has knee surgery". MLB.com. Retrieved August 3, 2014.
  15. ^ Snyder, Matt. "All-Star catcher Jason Castro now a Stanford graduate". CBS Sports. Retrieved August 3, 2014.
  16. ^ a b c d e f "Jason Castro Stats". Baseball-Reference.com.
  17. ^ "Twins, Jason Castro agree to deal". MLB.com. November 30, 2016. Retrieved November 30, 2016.
  18. ^ "Jason Castro out for 2018 year after knee surgery". MLB. Retrieved May 16, 2018.
  19. ^ "Angels complete catcher Castro's 1-year deal". ESPN.com. January 8, 2020.
  20. ^ "Padres acquire veteran catcher Jason Castro from Angels". San Diego Union-Tribune. August 31, 2020.
  21. ^ "Jason Castro returns home on 2-year deal". MLB.com.
  22. ^ McTaggart, Brian (January 22, 2021). "Astros, Jason Castro finalize 2-year deal". MLB.com. Retrieved January 22, 2021.
  23. ^ McTaggart, Brian (October 19, 2021). "Astros stun Fenway in 7-run 9th, knot ALCS". MLB.com. Retrieved October 19, 2021.
  24. ^ McTaggart, Brian (October 30, 2021). "Stubbs replaces Castro on Astros' WS roster". MLB.com. Retrieved October 30, 2021.
  25. ^ "Memorable Weddings: Maris & Jason". Houston Lifestyles & Homes. Retrieved March 10, 2015.
  26. ^ "Astros catcher Jason Castro and wife Maris to host book drive June 29–30". MLB.com. June 24, 2013. Retrieved March 9, 2015.