By Sam Bush
Reigning NL MVP Bryce Harper is the only sure thing in the Phils outfield right now.
Mickey Moniak and Adam Haseley could be penciled in to the other two spots, but …
Phillies fans have been sitting up ever since Saturday, when MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reported the Phillies are one of the teams that has shown interest in All-Star outfielder Nick Castellanos.
Reds general manager Nick Krall told reporters Saturday that the team “not been engaged” with Castellanos’ representatives about a contract.
Castellanos spent the past two seasons with the Reds. The 30-year-old became a free agent in November after opting out of the final two years and $34 million remaining on the previous deal he signed in January 2020.
Before the lockout began, MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported Castellanos was seeking a seven- or eight-year contract this offseason.
Castellanos is arguably the top remaining free-agent outfielder on the market, but there’s a lot of depth in that area still available. Kris Bryant, Michael Conforto and Andrew McCutchen have yet to sign.
The addition of the DH to the NL could help Castellanos’ market. He has been the fourth-worst outfielder by defensive runs saved (minus-47) since his first full MLB season in 2014, per FanGraphs.
Castellanos’ calling card has always been his bat, and he’s coming off the best season of his career. The Florida native hit .309/.362/.576 with 34 homers and 100 RBI in 138 games for the Reds in 2021.