Castro swaps number 'out of respect' for Salmon

March 3rd, 2020

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Angels catcher has worn No. 15 throughout most of his nine-year career and entered Spring Training set to wear that number again with his new club.

But Castro, who joined the Angels on a one-year deal for $6.85 million this offseason, was unaware that former Angels great Tim Salmon was the last to wear No. 15 for the franchise, so Castro made a late switch and will now wear No. 16. Former Angels great Garret Anderson also wore No. 16, but Castro will be the fifth player to wear that number since Anderson left the club after the 2008 season.

“I knew [Salmon] was No. 15 when he played his entire career but I wasn’t aware they hadn’t issued it since,” Castro said. “When I found that out, I pretty quickly decided I wanted to switch out of respect for him considering his impact on the organization. He’s still pretty involved with the organization, so it was a pretty easy decision to make. I looked at the roster and saw 16 was available, and it was close enough.”

Castro, 32, has been trying to work hard this spring to learn the pitchers in his first season with his new club. He’s been impressed by what he’s seen, but noted that there’s still work to do.

“I’ve been impressed,” Castro said. “I still haven’t had the opportunity to catch everybody. But the guys I have been able to catch from a stuff standpoint, I’m really pleased with what I’m seeing. I caught [Julio] Teheran yesterday, I caught [Dylan] Bundy a couple times. I caught [Hansel] Robles, Kenyan Middleton. So there are a number of guys who should be big impact arms for us.”

Trout excited to be a father
Angels superstar made a joint announcement with his wife, Jessica, on Twitter on Monday night that the couple is expecting their first child in August. The video announcement was professionally done and included behind-the-scenes footage of Trout finding the result of Jessica's pregnancy test and family members finding out it’ll be a boy as well.

“It’s just a special moment in our life,” Trout said on Tuesday. “And we wanted to show it.”

Angels manager Joe Maddon said he’s excited for Trout, joking that the Angels are already looking into signing Trout’s son and will be testing his speed when he takes his first steps. Maddon added he hadn’t seen the video yet but planned to watch it and congratulate Trout.

“I’ll make sure I talk to him,” Maddon said. “I’m amused by all the things they can do this day and age. I know he and his family have a lot of fans. So it’s very cool. It’s life-altering as we all know. He becomes third in that family. It’s wonderful, really wonderful.”

Angels tidbits
• The Angels will make an announcement on their Opening Day starter by the end of the week, Maddon said. It's between left-hander Andrew Heaney and newcomers Teheran and Bundy. Heaney has never started a regular-season opener, but could be the top candidate given his longevity with the club. Teheran started the last six Opening Days for the Braves, while Bundy was the Opening Day starter for the Orioles in '18.

• Teheran came out of his first start fine on Monday, as he missed his scheduled start on Wednesday with left hamstring tightness. But Maddon said Teheran felt good on Tuesday and he remains on track to be ready for the start of the regular season.

Up next
Bundy will make his third start of the spring on Wednesday, when the Angels host the Mariners at 12:10 p.m. PT at Tempe Diablo Stadium, available live on MLB.TV. Bundy has fared well so far this spring, throwing four hitless innings with seven strikeouts and one walk allowed. Lefty Nestor Cortes starts for Seattle.