Castellanos announces Tigers pick: his brother
DETROIT -- The Tigers have a history of making Draft picks within the family as the rounds pile up. Rarely, however, does a family member have a chance to announce the pick.
When Detroit used its 25th-round selection on Nova Southeastern University right-hander Ryan Castellanos, it decided to bring his brother into the Draft room to make the call himself. Tigers third baseman Nick Castellanos took a break from his preparations for Wednesday night's game against the Cubs to break the news.
It was a cool moment for a family that already has built a lot of Tigers ties.
"I know my mom is really excited," Nick Castellanos said. "She's probably more happy than the day I got drafted, because I was supposed to get drafted. My brother, we really didn't know what was going to happen."
Her side of the family, including a retired Detroit firefighter, hails from Michigan. Together, they've had a chance to watch Nick -- a first-round pick by the Tigers in 2010 -- at Comerica Park on a regular basis over the past year and a half. Meanwhile, Ryan had been trying to build his pitching career, first at the University of Illinois for two seasons, then closer to their home at Nova Southeastern University -- best known for producing J.D. Martinez -- in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., this spring.
"He's only been pitching for three years, just out of his senior year [in high school]," Nick Castellanos said. "He ended up getting a pretty decent scholarship to the University of Illinois. He pitched there for two years, transferred, got a full ride at Nova Southeastern University, J.D.'s old college, got first-team All-Conference and was the ace of the staff, really. And only pitching three years, so he's still learning how to pitch himself, really.
"He's still tinkering with his mechanics, so he can come to a professional organization and get really good hands-on coaching every day. Who knows how good he can be?"
Ryan Castellanos went 9-3 with a 3.23 ERA in 15 starts this year.
"He throws a lot of strikes," Nick said. "One thing he's really good at is pounding the strike zone. He doesn't walk a lot of people. And other than that, he's still learning as a pitcher himself, because he's only pitched for three years since his senior year in high school.
"Velocity-wise, he's like 87-90 [mph] and throws a bunch of innings, due partly to throwing a lot of strikes. Now, it's just a matter of him getting into the system and getting familiar with Tigers coaches and getting his mechanics down and everything and grinding it out."