CLEVELAND – Observing one of the absolute best hitters on the earth flail at Luis Castillo’s 98-mph fastballs and devastating 88-mph changeups all over the All-Famous person Recreation on Tuesday, Los Angeles Dodgers supervisor Dave Roberts stated Castillo reminded him of Pedro Martinez.
Sure, that Pedro Martinez. The primary-ballot Corridor of Famer. The 3-time Cy Younger winner, eight-time All-Famous person and some of the greatest faces within the game for 20 years.
Chris Singleton, who performed six seasons within the Majors, made the similar comparability all over the ESPN radio broadcast. Castillo struck out two in a scoreless inning, drawing seven swings and misses. Castillo confronted simply 3 batters, however he had extra swings and misses than any pitcher within the All-Famous person Recreation.
Martinez used to be Castillo’s formative years hero. Castillo’s dad would name to him when Martinez used to be pitching on TV and they’d learn about the way in which Martinez pitched in combination at their domestic within the Dominican Republic. He grew up observing Martinez dominate hitters together with his changeup.
The loopy phase? When Martinez watches Castillo pitch, he sees himself too.
“He strikes a chord in my memory numerous myself,” Martinez, an MLB Community analyst, advised The Enquirer. “I take into accout assembly him in Baní, his place of origin, and the very first thing he requested when he first met me used to be how do you grip the changeup? How do I decelerate my changeup a bit bit extra? We went into baseball dialog and because then we changed into buddies.
“I really like the child. The child is so humble. He strikes a chord in my memory such a lot of me.”
Castillo, after all, cherishes each and every time he has a chance to speak with Martinez. Infrequently, he’ll watch YouTube movies of Martinez prior to his begins.
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The primary time they met used to be lengthy prior to Castillo changed into an All-Famous person. Castillo won’t ever put out of your mind the overall message from the 5-foot-11, 170-pound Martinez.
“I used to be status subsequent to Pedro,” the 6-foot-2 Castillo stated, “and he stated those phrases to me: ‘Take a look at your measurement and have a look at my measurement. Take a look at what I used to be ready to do. You’re ready to achieve this and extra.’ It clearly impressed me and gave me numerous motivation to stay running and stay transferring ahead. It used to be in reality nice.”
After going through Castillo all over an interleague sequence final month, Alex Bregman stated his Houston Astros teammates mentioned Castillo for weeks later on. Bregman stated Castillo used to be a few of the best 3 pitchers he’s noticed.
Opposing hitters say Castillo’s changeup appears similar to his fastball. The 10-mph distinction and motion at the pitch is the explanation it’s so tough to hit. Reds reliever Amir Garrett attempted to have Castillo educate him the changeup final 12 months. Garrett briefly gave up. It’s now not a pitch that may be taught. It’s a present.
“It’s remarkable. It’s as just right as mine,” Martinez stated of Castillo’s changeup. “He’s actually surviving on fastball, changeup and site. It’s so just right that even figuring out that you simply’re going to throw the changeup, they’re now not ready to catch as much as it but.
“He has a bit slider. When he will get higher with the opposite breaking ball, he’s going to be much more dominant.”
Having a look at Castillo’s breakout season, incomes his first Opening Day begin to first All-Famous person Recreation variety, Martinez says it’s harking back to his personal 1997 season. He gained his first Cy Younger that 12 months with a 17-Eight file, 1.90 ERA and 305 strikeouts in 241⅓ innings.
“He’s beginning the season more or less like the only I had in ’97 the place now not a lot used to be anticipated out of the Expos,” Martinez stated. “Other folks don’t be expecting a lot out of the Cincinnati Reds, however they’re higher than we predict. Luis is most certainly in the similar scenario, having an impressive season on a staff that’s now not anticipated to be within the postseason, however you by no means know in baseball.”
The 26-year-old Castillo stands proud together with his changeup. His luck this season speaks for itself, getting into the All-Famous person destroy with the second-lowest ERA (2.29) within the Majors. He is venerated that individuals call to mind Martinez once they watch him.
“Anytime you’re ever in comparison to a legend like that, like Pedro,” Castillo stated, “it’s superb.”
Castillo grew up observing Martinez each and every probability he may. Now, Martinez enjoys observing Castillo take the mound with a an identical mixture of fastballs and changeups.
“I advised him anytime you end up second-guessing what you’ll do, simply have a look at me and use me for example,” Martinez stated. “Simply move available in the market and paintings laborious. Find out about the sport. By no means take anything else as a right and move grind it as a result of if I did it, he may do it.”