Every spring each team makes several rounds of cuts over the coarse of spring training. Generally the closer to opening day, the more the rosters start to thin out. It’s a natural cyclical part of Baseball. Sometimes though, some of the cuts are just down right sad. The Dodgers cut four players today from the major league roster, reassigning three of them to minor league camp. Did you see the title? More other guys! Yay!
#Dodgers have reassigned Tony Gwynn Jr. and Wilkin Castillo. Ramon Castro has been released.
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) March 18, 2013
One of those players was Tony Gwynn Jr. The son of legendary Padre Tony Gwynn, Sr. was acquired by the Dodgers in 2011 as a fourth outfielder. Gwynn is a 30 year old left handed hitting outfielder. He was originally drafted by the Brewers in the 2003 amateur draft.
Gwynn played in 136 games for the Dodgers in 2011, posting a triple slash line of .256/.308/.353 with two home runs, 22 RBI, and 22 stolen bases. Gwynn saw a lot of time that season because of all the injuries, and he was able to see almost as much time in 2012, thanks to the injuries to Matt Kemp among others. In 2012, Gwynn played in 103 games, posting a line of .232./.276/.293. Gwynn stole 13 bases last year, and received 277 plate appearances.
Manager Don Mattingly kind of hinted at Gwynn possibly being cut, by saying something about it being tough to get him at-bats or something like that. Gwynn is a .244 career hitter with 77 stolen bases in his seven major league seasons. It is a bit sad to see Gwynn get cut. I’ve always liked the guy. He is truly one of the nicest guys in the game today. I won’t forget the few games he won with his superior defense. That was Gwynn’s strength, his great outfield defense, and strong throwing arm. Gwynn has played in 11 games this spring, batting .211 (4 for 19) with two stolen bases. Unfortunately Gwynn could never hit well enough to stay on with a major league team.
Gwynn won’t be going back to minor league camp alone though, the Dodgers made sure he would have some company. The Dodgers cut three other players other than Gwynn. Two are joining Gwynn in minor league camp.
The Dodgers cut right handed pitcher Juan Abreu. Abreu is considered a top ranked prospect and has impressed somewhat this spring. Abreu was acquired this winter as a free agent. He has pitched seven innings this spring, allowing no runs, five hits, and whiffing seven. Abreu has looked strong this spring, not allowing a run. Abreu is 26 years old, and from the Dominican. Abreu has appeared in the majors once before. He pitched in seven games for the Astros back in 2011.
The Dodgers also cut Wilkin Castillo, and released catcher Ramon Castro. Castillo is the 26 year old infielder/outfielder who was signed by the Dbacks as an amateur free agent back in 2002. Castillo is from the Dominican, and played in a handful of games for the Reds from 2008-2009. While Castillo is 11 for 35 in his Major league career, he was somehow able to appear in 12 games for the Dodgers this spring, going 6 for 18 (.333) with two stolen bases.
The Dodgers released catcher Ramon Castro. Castro is the 37 year old major league veteran backstop with the mug like face only a mother could love. I have no idea why the Dodgers even invited him to spring training. He has been useless for years. Castro has 13 years of major league experience as a backup catcher, but has never been able to hit well. He has a career .237 batting average with 67 big league home runs. Castro has played for three teams, (Mets, Marlins, and White Sox), since his rookie season in 1999 with the Fish, keep in mind, Castro was drafted way back in 1994 by the Astros in the first round. Castro played in eight games for the Dodgers this spring. He batted .214 going 3 for 14 with one home run.
There will be more cuts to come soon. Let’s all light a candle for these guys, as the Dodger’s spring training at Camelback Ranch marches on.