CLEVELAND -- Rusney Castillo serving as the fifth outfielder for the Red Sox is hardly ideal, considering he has just 309 career at-bats in the Major Leagues and is relatively young (28 years old). Manager John Farrell acknowledges that there could come a time it makes more sense for Castillo to get regular at-bats at Triple-A.
"Every player, you want to be sure that they're getting regular time," Farrell said. "And in his role, right now, it's a challenge to get the regular at-bats. I can't say that we've gotten to the point where we're looking to make a change. I won't rule out that it might come up in conversation as we go forward. But we're not there yet."
To say this situation is unique would be an understatement. The Red Sox signed Castillo to a seven-year, $72.5 million contract in August 2014. But his career thus far has been marked by nagging injuries and inconsistent play. In 329 plate appearances, Castillo has a .262/.302/.379 line with seven homers and 35 RBIs.
That's not enough of a sample size for the Red Sox to have a true idea of what they have. But they feel their best chance to win at this time is with Brock Holt and Chris Young forming a platoon in left field. Jackie Bradley Jr. and Mookie Betts are holding down regular spots in center and right.
"He's in a tough spot," Farrell said. "No one denies it. We've had sitdown conversations with him on what his role is going to be and how we make the most of it, and yet at the same time, you're looking to put the best team on the field. That's where we are. It's a situation Rusney's in. It's not an easy position to be in. It's a role that he's not accustomed to because of how often he played in Cuba before coming over here, so we'll work to make the best of it."
Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.