Luis Castillo: Seattle Mariners Fantasy Baseball Advice for 2023

Luis Castillo, of the Seattle Mariners, pitches in the Wild Card Series against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Luis Castillo, of the Seattle Mariners, pitches in the Wild Card Series against the Toronto Blue Jays. / Mark Blinch/GettyImages

The Seattle Mariners have a top-10 rotation in the MLB and Luis Castillo is a big part of it, if not the biggest. So far in his career, he's been like red wine, getting better after each year.

He's had a few road bumps but his ERA has been on a downward trend since 2018 where he posted a 4.30 ERA. And when you look at his career numbers, it's crazy to think that he's only been an All-Star twice in his career. Will he be at T-Mobile Park wearing an All-Star jersey this summer?

What fantasy baseball managers should expect from Luis Castillo

You should expect excellence from Luis Castillo, nothing less. FantasyPros has him ranked as the 18th-best starting pitcher, while ESPN has him ranked 17th in a points league.

FanGraphs' Steamer has him taking a step back a bit: 3.34 ERA. However, all Seattle Mariners fans and fantasy managers shouldn't be worried at all. I'd be happy to have Luis Castillo as my top starting pitcher on my fantasy team if I wasn't able to get Corbin Burnes or Shohei Ohtani as my frontman.

Luis Castillo posted his first sub-3.00 ERA last season and has only posted an ERA above 3.50 twice (2018 and 2021). It's safe to say that he's a top starting pitcher in the MLB and even if he does slightly regress, he's still a very good fantasy baseball pitcher. He will get you plenty of strikeouts and wins with how the Seattle Mariners are looking.

Draft strategy for Luis Castillo

It was never a doubt that Castillo is a good pitcher and fantasy baseball asset, now the question is when to draft him. I think the list FantasyPros created accurately represents where Luis Castillo ranks among pitchers. With every fantasy draft, it's good to pick and choose which areas you want to focus on, especially in a categories league.

On FantasyPros, he is the 57th overall player so if you're going to create a pitcher heavy team, I wouldn't be afraid to select Castillo in the fourth round if the pitchers start to get selected. If you start seeing names like Justin Verlander, Carlos Rodon, and Zack Wheeler come off the board, that'd be the time to start considering Luis Castillo.

The one thing I will mention is the slight risk Luis Castillo brings to the table. He is a bit like Carlos Rodon for me where he's had two fantastic seasons but a few bumps in the road. Luis Castillo is a bit more consistent than Carlos Rodon's rollercoaster of a career, but my thinking still remains.

Pitchers like Zack Wheeler and Julio Urias are safer bets for me because they have a year or two of additional consistency compared to Luis Castillo. My message is not to shy away from the Seattle Mariners ace, but my message is more about not taking Castillo in front of other mainstays in the league. I firmly believe in Luis Castillo's ability to be an All-Star and a potential Cy Young contender, but there is always the risk.

Other things to note on Luis Castillo

Similar to my last message above, there are plenty of quality pitchers out there. Some that you know very well, some that you have heard of, and some that you have never heard of. There always seems to be a couple of breakout pitchers that start on waivers so keep an eye out for those league winners.

And to that point, if you're hesitant about Luis Castillo, that's okay. Play it safe and draft a pitcher that might be a little less volatile because they've been a bit more consistent. Make sure you get a top-10 starting pitcher so you can wait till the third level of pitchers ranked in the 30s to 50s.