Marlins remain interested in star OF (report)

7:08 PM UTC

MLB.com is keeping track of all the latest news and rumors surrounding right fielder , who is a free agent after opting out of his contract with the Reds.

Nov. 27: Marlins remain interested in Castellanos (report)

The Marlins continue to show interest in Castellanos, reports MLB Network insider Jon Heyman.

Addressing the offense, and specifically the outfield, is a top priority for Miami this offseason. Starling Marte was a reported target before reaching a four-year, $78 million deal with the Mets on Friday.

Given his expected price tag, signing Castellanos would represent a departure from the team’s recent M.O., but Miami does seem more willing to spend this offseason than it has in the past. Per Heyman, the Marlins were in on Marte until the end but were outbid by the Mets.

Castellanos, a South Florida native, opted out of the final two years and $34 million remaining on his contract with the Reds earlier this month to become a free agent. He’s tied to Draft-pick compensation after passing on Cincinnati’s one-year, $18.4 million qualifying offer.

Nov. 18: Giants among teams pursuing Castellanos
The Giants are among the teams showing interest in Castellanos, according to MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi. The Marlins remain interested, too, after meeting with the slugger's agent, Scott Boras, last week.

San Francisco brought back Brandon Belt via a one-year, $18.4 million qualifying offer on Wednesday, but the club still needs to replace multiple star hitters after Kris Bryant hit free agency and Buster Posey retired.

The departure of those two players leaves the Giants' lineup unbalanced. Evan Longoria, Wilmer Flores, Darin Ruf, Austin Slater and Curt Casali are the team's only remaining right-handed hitters from the group of players who accrued at least 200 plate appearances for San Francisco in 2021.

Castellanos would be a questionable defensive fit patrolling right field at spacious Oracle Park, but it's possible a universal designated hitter will be part of the next Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Nov. 11: Castellanos not ruling out Reds reunion
Nick Castellanos opted out of his Reds contract last week, but he hasn't shut the door on returning to the Queen City in 2022. The 29-year-old outfielder spoke with reporters Thursday night, shortly after winning his first Silver Slugger Award, and said that "of course" he would entertain the idea of playing in Cincinnati once again.

“I feel like there's still a lot of valuable pieces that are very good to win with,” he said. “Jonathan India … Jesse Winker is coming into his own, figuring out who he is, figuring out what kind of father he wants to be, he's doing a great job at that. Joey Votto just reinvented himself. We still have pitching. We still have pieces. Why wouldn't I entertain it?”

Castellanos could remain with the team by signing the one-year, $18.4 million qualifying offer extended to him by the Reds, but he is reportedly expected to reject it. It's not a surprising decision after Castellanos posted a .939 OPS this past season and is set to earn a big-money, multi-year contract as one of the top outfielders on the free-agent market.

Nov. 11: Marlins eyeing Castellanos, García (reports)
The Marlins met with Scott Boras to discuss free-agent outfielder and Miami-area native Nick Castellanos, according to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman.

Miami is expected to seek offensive upgrades this offseason, and Castellanos certainly qualifies after hitting .309 with 34 homers, 100 RBIs and a .939 OPS in 2021.

The 29-year-old slugger opted out of the two years and $34 million remaining on his contract with the Reds to test free agency. Cincinnati subsequently made him a one-year, $18.4 million qualifying offer, but he will reportedly decline it.

A big free-agent deal would be out of character for the Marlins, who had one of the lowest payrolls in the Majors this past season.

In franchise history, the team has signed only four free agents to deals with at least $50 million in guaranteed money: José Reyes ($106 million), Wei-Yin Chen ($80 million), Mark Buehrle ($58 million) and Carlos Delgado ($52 million). Reyes, Buehrle and Delgado were all traded after one season with the team, the first two going to Toronto in the same 2012 deal.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports that the Marlins are also showing interest in free agent Avisaíl García, who could be a more cost-effective option than Castellanos.

Nov. 5: Reds will extend QO to Castellanos
Reds general manager Nick Krall confirmed Friday that the team will extend a one-year, $18.4 million qualifying offer to Castellanos. The outfielder will have until Nov. 17 to decide on the offer. After opting out of the two years and $34 million left on his previous deal, he's certain to decline the QO, which means he'll be tied to Draft-pick compensation if he departs Cincinnati to sign with another team.

Nov. 4: Castellanos opting out of contract
Castellanos has opted out of his contract to become a free agent. The outfielder had two years and $34 million remaining on the four-year, $64 million deal he signed with the Reds after the 2019 season.

Castellanos, 29, had a strong 2021 campaign in which he hit .309 with 34 homers, 38 doubles, 100 RBIs and a .939 OPS over 138 games for Cincinnati, which makes him one of the top outfield bats on the free-agent market.

Since the beginning of 2016, Castellanos has posted a .286/.338/.515 slash line with 142 homers in 773 games.

It's possible the Reds will extend a one-year, $18.4 million qualifying offer to Castellanos, which would tie him to Draft compensation.