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2022 Player Outlook

2021 was a year to forget for Castillo from a record perspective. He posted his third-straight season with a sub-4.00 ERA, yet he went 8-16. Many of his batted ball metrics were similar to recent seasons, but a drop in strikeouts could be at play here. Despite posting a whiff rate in the 70th percentile and chase rate in the 76th percentile, his strikeout rate was in the 53rd percentile and his lowest mark since 2018. He did allow more contact than in years past, and opponents made more contact out of the zone, another reason why his strikeout rate likely declined. Castillo had a rough start to the year, but after the All-Star break, he posted a 3.18 ERA, and the 96 strikeouts across 85 innings are more like what we have become used to seeing with Castillo. He has one of the game's best changeups in his arsenal, and a strong finish to the season sparks optimism for a bounce-back for the Cincinnati ace. There's some risk in taking him, given how bad he was at the beginning of the season, but he could easily be one of the draft's best values if he picks up right where he left off.

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