While the hope of a Nicholas Castellanos reunion with the Chicago Cubs does not seem likely, fans are not shying away from their desire to bring him back.
Back in 2012, Chicago Cubs radio play-by-play man Pat Hughes announced the team had signed fan-favorite Kerry Wood to a new contract at Cubs Convention. Some fans had slight hope that something similar would happen this year with free agent outfielder Nicholas Castellanos. Despite owner Tom Ricketts making it clear they need to move money in order to spend money, fans naturally hope for miracles.
Hughes used the words “added to the 40-man roster,” and “We are not done yet!” to his introductions, but the names that followed did not involve Castellanos. While certainly unintentional it was sure something to get teased by Hughes during the introduction ceremonies. In the end there were no surprise signings of any kind announced at the convention.
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What followed the Hughes introduction ceremony was the traditional season hype video. When highlights of Castellanos came up in the video, the crowd began to cheer very loudly. In fact he got seemingly more cheers during the video montage than any other highlight that was shown. Pretty amazing for a guy who has played in 51 total games as a Cub, but the cheers were well deserved.
It is no secret the fans want Castellanos back. Stating the obvious, I know.
Inactivity by Cubs front office not going unnoticed at the convention
Tom Ricketts was met by spattered boos when he made his introductory speech due to fan frustration over the lack of spending this offseason and the progress (or lack there of) on getting Marquee Sports Network a deal with Comcast. Heck, even Ryan Dempster made jokes about the team’s lack of activity this winter in his Off the Mound segment he did on Friday night.
While members of the front office have hinted that moves could be coming by saying the offseason is not over yet, there is little hope that significant moves will be made without at least trading away a core piece. The Luxury Tax is clearly an issue for them and they will not suddenly change their view on it. Even with the fans making their views pretty on the situation pretty clear.
The free agent pool is draining fast and Castellanos is one of the biggest remaining names. One can wonder if him not signing yet is him waiting out on the Cubs making him an offer. He expressed how much he loved Chicago last year and he fit in so well at Wrigley Field.
There have been talks about him being in communication with the Texas Rangers per MLB Network’s Jon Morosi but nothing has materialized. Though it is likely he will sign somewhere sooner or later with Spring Training coming up around the corner. If the Cubs want him then they will have to free up some money fast.
Until Castellanos officially signs somewhere, there will be people seeking hope that a reunion is possible. Even in 2018 when the Yu Darvish rumors were swirling during Cubs Convention, it did not seem like that was even as big of a topic of conversation as Castellanos this year.