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Friday, November 22, 2019

Pedro Castellano saw 3 ML seasons, first hit with luck

Pedro Castellano 1990 Peoria Chiefs card
Pedro Castellano got jammed in the eighth inning of this June 1993 game for the Rockies, but he got lucky, he told The Associated Press.

Castellano's luck turned into a bloop single that sent home the difference in the game - Castellano's first major league RBI, The AP wrote.

"It was an inside slider, and I managed to hit it in the air. I just made contact," Castellano told The AP afterward. "I haven't been playing that much, and it's hard to get a hit when you're not playing much. That was a big RBI. ... It was nice to have my first RBI be a game-winner."

Castellano hit that game-winner in is first season with time in the majors. He went on to see time in two more major league campaigns and see a total of 51 big league games.

Castellano's career began in 1989, signed by the Cubs the previous year as an undrafted free agent out of his native Venezuela. Castellano was also credited by the name Pete Castellano.

Castellano started with the Cubs at rookie Wytheville. He hit .311 in 66 games. He moved to single-A Peoria and high-A Winston-Salem in 1990, then 1991 between Winston-Salem and AA Charlotte.

Castellano split time in 1992 between AA Charlotte and AAA Iowa. Playing for Iowa that June, Castellano gave up a crucial error in a game against Nashville, according to The Nashville Tennessean.

"I didn't stay down on the ball," Castellano told The Tennessean afterward. "I thought the hop was going to be high but it wasn't."

That November, Castellano went to the Rockies in the expansion draft. He started that next season at AAA Colorado Springs. Then, in May, he debuted in Denver. He got into 34 games for the Rockies that year and hit .183.

He played an abbreviated 1994 at Colorado Springs after a series of injuries. He then returned to the majors for four games in 1995, then 13 final games with the Rockies in 1996.

Castellano played his last game with the Rockies in June 1996. That September, Castellano still hoped to get back.

"I don't blame the Rockies," Castellano told The Colorado Springs Gazette Telegraph. "I know they see me as Triple-A insurance in case anything happens to Vinny (Castilla), but nobody wants to be looked at that way. You want to play."

Castellano went on to play the next year at AAA with the Twins and in Japan, with Yomiuri. He then arrived in Mexico for 1998 and found a home for the next 16 seasons.

Castellano played his first season in Mexico with Mexico City and saw his last recorded time with Veracruz in 2013.
Pedro Castellano 1990 Peoria Chiefs card
1990 Minor League Tally
Players/Coaches Featured:3,225
Made the Majors:1,164-36.1%-X
Never Made Majors:2,061-63.9%
5+ Seasons in the Majors: 482
10+ Seasons in the Minors:284

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