Rusney Castillo

Why Rusney Castillo could be with Red Sox sooner rather than later

Ryan Hannable
May 19, 2015 - 1:22 pm

The Red Sox are currently hitting .208/.298/.341 in the month of May, averaging 2.38 runs per game and clearly in need of a spark. That spark might be on its way sooner than later in Rusney Castillo. The outfielder is currently on paternity leave for the birth of his child, but once he returns to action, it could be in Boston. "He'€™s returned home, obviously, with the birth of his child -- that'€™s going to be a couple of days," said manager John Farrell. "Whether or not we allow him to get a game under his belt in Pawtucket before possibly looking at a change here, those are all possibilities." Castillo suffered a shoulder injury the first weekend of the season with Triple-A Pawtucket and missed a few weeks. In his return to Pawtucket he went 0 for his first 11, but has quickly found his stride as he is currently hitting .400 over his last seven games, including a pair of three-hit games. After his 3-for-4 performance Friday night with two home runs and a double, Pawtucket manager Kevin Boles discussed how he was starting to make an impact with his bat, and that his time in Pawtucket was almost like a spring training for him as he missed a good portion of major league spring training with a strained oblique and then a few weeks with the shoulder injury. "This is kind of his spring training," Boles said. "We'€™ve talked about this before, because he'€™s missed some time, but he'€™s slowly but surely settling in. He'€™s getting into the game speed. Tonight he made an impact on the game. Tonight he was was one of the best players on the field." Castillo could certainly give a boost to the Red Sox outfield, which is currently hitting .232/.308/.378 as a group. It has struggled specifically in right field, as that position has combined to hit just .144/.250/.227 -- all three categories being last in the American League at the position. "But it'€™s good to see him get back on the field," Farrell added. "The timing is there, the ability to impact the baseball. I guess, in the short, he'€™s doing what he can to impact potential change." Shane Victorino is currently batting .212 in his 52 at-bats this year. Daniel Nava is hitting .160. Mookie Betts is hitting just .221 with an on-base percentage of .287 out of the lead-off spot, and since being called up May 10, Jackie Bradley is 0 for 11, and in the midst of a 0-for-29 skid dating back to last year. All signs that point to a move in the outfield with Castillo being the logical choice. Some thought Farrell would shakeup the batting order Tuesday after scoring just seven runs in the four-game weekend series in Seattle, but that wasn't the case. Farrell maintained it was because it wasn't a specific player or two struggling, it was the whole lineup. While Farrell showed some support for the players currently on the roster, he certainly didn't rule out the possibility of a potential change that would seemingly be Castillo. "We have the capability here," said Farrell. "I'€™m not saying that there won'€™t be changes -- whether that'€™s to the lineup or whether that'€™s to our position player group -- but coming off the road trip I thought let'€™s get through the off-day and still maintain some stability, always with an eye to what changes might help us."