Nick Castellanos congratulates former Tigers teammate Miguel Cabrera on 3,000 hits with funny throwback photo
Detroit Tigers star Miguel Cabrera is one of the greatest hitters of the last two decades of Major League Baseball, but he ascended to a new level of greatness on Saturday. On a beautiful afternoon in front of Detroit’s faithful, the eventual first-ballot Hall of Famer added yet another achievement to his lengthy resumé when he stroked an opposite-field hit for the 3,000th of his career.
After spending the first five seasons of his career with the then-Florida Marlins, they traded Cabrera to the Tigers ahead of the 2008 season, and he’s been in Detroit ever since. Castellanos made his debut in 2013, and the two were teammates until midway through the 2019 season, when the Tigers dealt Castellanos to the Chicago Cubs.
Fittingly, the reason Castellanos is a Phillie now, is because of his history with the Tigers. He was their first-round pick in 2010, under the leadership of then-GM Dave Dombrowski. The longtime executive has a history of bringing talent with him from club to club (David Price, Rick Porcello, JD Martinez), and was eyeing Castellanos before the lockout. When it ended in early March, Dombrowski convinced Phillies managing partner John Middleton to exceed the luxury tax for the first time in franchise history in order to ink Castellanos to a five-year deal.
Dombrowski, of course, is also the reason Cabrera became a Tiger so many years ago. He spent almost a decade as the GM of the Marlins, and uring his tenure, the club signed a young Cabrera as an amateur free agent in 1999.
The Tigers squired Dombrowski away to be their GM in 2002, so he was gone by the time a rookie Cabrera faced down the Yankees in the 2003 World Series and helped the Marlins to their second and most recent championship. But a few years later, Dombrowski managed to convince his former team to part with the young star.
The Instagram post wasn’t the only way Castellanos honored his former teammate, though. In the Phillies’ own game on Saturday, he went 1-for-3 with two RBI.