Tigers Scouting Report #26: Harold Castro

After a slow start in 2014 in West Michigan, Harold Castro was sent back to extended spring training, while other middle infield prospects like Javier Betancourt, Domingo Leyba and Willy Adames all performed well in West Michigan. But Castro revived himself in the second half of the season, hitting nearly .300 in Lakeland.

Harold Castro

Vitals

Position: Second Baseman


Date of Birth: 11/30/1993 (2014 Opening Day Age: 21)
Height/Weight: 6-0/165
Bats/Throws: Left/Right
Acquired: Amateur Free Agent, 2011
Ranking History: #28 (2012), #14 (2013), #12 (2014), #26 (2015)

Background: Signed for less than $30,000 in 2011, Castro hit well in both the VSL and GCL his first two years, before stumbling in his full-season debut in 2013. After holding his own with a .274 average in 21 games with Lakeland, he moved down to West Michigan and posted a .231 average with nine extra-base hits in 41 games. In a return to West Michigan in 2014, Castro hit just .250 before heading back to extended spring training and then posting an impressive .299 average in 57 games with High-A Lakeland.

Performance:

2014 Stats - Hitting
TEAMABRH2B3BHRRBIBBSOSBCSBAOBPSLG
West Mich 7281850035732.250.304.319
Lakeland 21117635001094088.299.335.322


Scouting Report

Body: Tall, thin, wiry frame; lacks strength; scouts beginning to question if strength will come at maturity; very good athlete.

Hit: Feel for the barrel; knows how to get the bat head into the zone, keep it there, and adjust to make contact; uses entire field; slappy approach without ability to drive ball consistently at present; aggressive swinger that could be exploited by more advanced pitchers with a plan; hit tool has raw potential to carry offensive profile; approach could stand to come along to allow hitting ability to manifest to highest level; potential above-average hitter. Grade – Present 4/Future 5+

Power: Works line drives line to line; has more strength and ability to rip the ball to pull side; everything to opposite field is soft and lacks punch; unlikely to develop much over the fence power at any point in career; could turn into doubles machine with strength; still easily below-average power profile. Grade – 3/3+

Speed: Plus run down the line; gets out of the box well; gets up to speed quickly; doesn't always run hard; stolen base threat; instincts are raw and need to keep developing; potential to steal 15-20 bases at peak. Grade – 5+/5+

Defense: Developing defender; has athleticism to be an asset in field; reads are rough off the bat; shows good range once he gets underway; can range equally well to both sides; actions aren’t always fluid, but are improving with repetition; hands are inconsistent but show flashes of being soft, above-average compliment to rest of defensive game; potential to be average keystone glove. Grade – 4/5

Arm: Solid arm; nothing flashy; can make all the throws required of his position; enough zip to make plays up the middle when off balance, as well as on the pivot; average overall. Grade – 5/5

Other: All parts of game are still a work in progress; doesn’t have natural feel for the game, but showing improved instincts as he gains reps; some questions surrounding level of effort; needs to display consistent effort on and off field; needs to get comfortable with baseball as his career and the requirement to be away from home/comfortable surroundings.



Final Word

Summary: Hit-tool first second baseman; batting average will have to completely carry profile; power will not be significant part of game; speed can add some value when he gets on base; glove and arm should both be average; difficult profile to make work over the long haul; needs effort/makeup to catch up to raw potential if profile is to work at all.

Risk: Extreme risk; Limited room for error; offensive profile relies heavily on one tool; unlikely to have potential for defensive versatility.

Projection: Still three years from MLB radar; projects to return to High-A in 2015; needs to hit at high level again; power could stand to come forward; really needs to show progress in entire game to continue to remain on prospect radar; potential average big leaguer if the game completely comes together.

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