Nick Castellanos is one of the most underrated players in baseball. He’ll never hit 40 home runs and he’s not going to win any MVPs, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a player with more hustle than him. This year, it was his performance off the bench that propelled Cincinnati Red’s into their first pennant in 18 years

Nick Castellanos Subtly Eviscerates Reds Owner Bob Castellini Without Even Saying His Name

Nick Castellanos was only with the Cincinnati Reds for two seasons (really only one-and-a-half considering how short the 2020 campaign was due to COVID-19). But he rapidly became a fan favorite and someone who Queen City fans had hoped to see for a long time.

However, after just two seasons of half-heartedly attempting to win, the Reds’ ownership decided to sell its talents. The front management allowed Castellanos depart in free agency after trading Jesse Winker, Eugenio Suarez, and Sonny Gray.

The club demonstrated why it has been one of MLB’s regular losers for more than two decades, and in the process, it enraged its supporters.

In light of Castellanos’ recent switch of teams and five-year contract with the Philadelphia Phillies, he subtly chastised Reds owner Bob Castellini.

The Reds made the mistake of allowing Nick Castellanos to walk.

Former Cincinnati Reds All-Star Nick Castellanos in 2021.

Former Cincinnati Reds All-Star Nick Castellanos in 2021. On Aug. 30, 2021, Nick Castellanos of the Cincinnati Reds poses before a game against the St. Louis Cardinals. | Getty Images/Dylan Buell

The Reds had gone six years without making the playoffs and hadn’t won a postseason series since 1995. But, ahead of the 2020 campaign, they opted to spend some money, bringing in Mike Moustakas, Nick Castellanos, and Wade Miley.

During the COVID-19 abbreviated season, it resulted in a playoff appearance.

They basically ran it again in 2021 and had a good season, finishing 83-79 and just missing the playoffs by a hair.

Castellanos, on the other hand, had a fantastic season. With a.309 average, 34 home runs, and 100 RBIs, the slugger was named to his first All-Star team. He opted out of his contract and became a free agency this offseason, undoubtedly knowing he was in line to earn a lot of money.

So, the Reds could have just signed him to a long-term contract, right?

They could have done so, but they didn’t.

Instead of re-signing Castellanos, Cincinnati determined that two years of contention was enough. It also passed on Miley’s option after he had a 3.37 ERA last season, and dealt away two-time Gold Glove catcher Tucker Barnhart. Sonny Gray was traded to the Minnesota Twins, while All-Star outfielder Jesse Winker and third baseman Eugenio Suarez were traded to the Seattle Mariners, adding salt to the wounds of the Reds’ supporters.

Ken Griffey Jr. (yep, the retired Hall of Famer) became the team’s sixth-highest paid player as a result of the flurry of trades.

But why did the Reds let go of so many talented players? “We’re matching our salary with our resources,” general manager Nick Krall stated after Miley was let go (h/t Cincinnati.com). As a result, ownership is unwilling to invest the money necessary to succeed.

And the players are aware of this.

Bob Castellini, the owner of the Reds, was delicately eviscerated by Nick Castellanos.

The Philadelphia Phillies surpassed the luxury tax threshold by signing Nick Castellanos to a five-year, $100 million contract. John Middleton, the company’s owner, is all in.

Castellanos now understands the difference between an owner like Middleton and someone like Reds owner Bob Castellini, who is cheap and has failed to deliver on his promise to win the team in 2006.

“That’s a lot of respect,” Castellanos said of Middleton’s decision to exceed the luxury tax for him, per NBC Sports Philadelphia. “At the end of the day, baseball comes down to ownership. The owner either wants to invest and cares about winning or doesn’t. So, it speaks a lot to who he is. So, Philadelphia should be pumped that that guy is behind the Phillies.”

Castellanos may not have intended to target Castellini. He didn’t say his name outright. But, considering his current circumstances with the Reds, a club he seemed to like playing for and a community in Cincinnati that welcomed him and his family, he was most likely thinking about the penny-pinching owner.

And he’s entirely accurate. With Castellini as owner, the Reds will never win.

With Bob Castellini in charge, the Reds will continue to lose.

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The Reds have been a laughingstock since Bob Castellini took them as owner in 2006. They’ve had 11 losing seasons and just four postseason appearances.

The front office has also cut go of a slew of celebrities before having to pay them. After witnessing Johnny Cueto become an All-Star the previous year, the Reds traded him in 2015. The next summer, they traded All-Star closer Aroldis Chapman to the New York Yankees before moving Jay Bruce during one of his three All-Star seasons in 2016.

Cincinnati has a history of being frugal and dumping guys who have helped them win. Nick Castellanos wasn’t the first, and he won’t be the last, unfortunately.

Perhaps his remarks will cause Castellini and whoever else in charge of the strings to wake up. But don’t put your money on it.

Baseball Reference provided the statistics.

With the signings of Kyle Schwarber and Nick Castellanos, Rhys Hoskins will have a career year for the Phillies.

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