Phillies slugger Nick Castellanos stepping up amid 13-game hitting streak

Nick Castellanos #8 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Nick Castellanos #8 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

Phillies right fielder Nick Castellanos currently has a 13-game hitting streak.

In the first season of his five-year, $100 million contract, Philadelphia Phillies slugger Nick Castellanos has been inconsistent, to say the least.

Many Phillies fans were rejuvenated when the Phillies added Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber this past offseason, which pushed them over the luxury tax for the first time in franchise history. It seemed adding two of Major League Baseball’s premiere hitters would bolster an already impressive lineup featuring Bryce Harper, J.T. Realmuto, Rhys Hoskins, and Jean Segura, among others.

It has taken some time for Castellanos to prove his worth to Phillies fans. He began the season hitting well — batting .300 with an OPS of .849 in April. May and June, however, were not as kind, as Castellanos hit just .234 and .223, respectively.

During those latter months, there was talk of whether Castellanos was worth his contract. Frustration built up, including the outfielder’s heated exchange between NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Jim Salisbury.

Since then, Castellanos’ bat has come alive and he is currently on a National League-best 13-game hitting streak. He is heating up and contributing at the right time — with Bryce Harper expected to return soon from his thumb injury. Since August 11, Castellanos is slashing .364/.364/.546 over 13 games — including going 1-for-4 with an RBI in Tuesday’s thrilling win against the Cincinnati Reds.

Castellanos has a chance to make up for his early season slump. If he can continue to make an  impact on offense down the stretch, it will greatly improve the Phillies’ chances of reaching the postseason for the first time in more than a decade.

With the addition of Harper back in the lineup, Realmuto hitting well, contributions from young players — like Bryson Stott, Alec Bohm, and Nick Maton — and a relatively easy schedule, the Phils may be poised to see meaningful October baseball once again.

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