Feb 28, 2016

Early Nineties Mets Pitcher: Tony Castillo (1991)

Antonio Jose (Jimenez) Castillo was born March 1, 1963 at Quibor, Lara, Venezuela. The five foot ten left hander, was originally signed by the Toronto Blue Jays in 1983. In his years at the A ball level he switched over to being a relief pitcher. He posted a best 14 saves in 1988 at playing at A ball Dunedin & AA Knoxville.

Castillo debuted in the majors with the Blue Jays in 1988 appearing in 14 games, earning his first career win against the Texas Rangers that September. He was back & forth from the minors up to the majors through 1993, getting traded to the Atlanta Braves along with Francisco Cabrerra for Jim Acker. Cabrerra is forever famous for getting the game winning walk off base hit in the 1992 NLCS Game #7, scoring Atlanta's Sid Bream.

Castillo pitched parts of three seasons with the Braves going 5-1 with a save in 1990 while posting a 4.23 ERA in 52 appearances. On August 28th, he was traded to the New York Mets, with a player to be named later (Joe Roa) for pitcher Alejandro Pena. Castillo debuted with the Mets on August 29th 1991 in Atlanta, finishing up a 2-0 loss to John Smoltz, in relief of Anthony Young.

On September 11th 1991 he made his first start of the season, in was in Chicago at Wrigley Field. He went six innings allowing no runs on three hits earning the victory. He would make two more starts getting to the fifth inning both times, allowing just one earned run in those starts but getting no decisions. In his last Mets outing he was credited with a hold as New York defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates in 11 innings giving John Franco a victory. He would pitch in just ten games for the Mets the rest of the season, posting a 1.90 ERA in 23 innings of work.

In January 1992 he was traded along with Mark Carreon to the Detroit Tigers for Paul Gibsson. He spent the season AAA Toledo going 2-3 with a 3.63 ERA & then signed as a free agent back with Toronto the next year. He would spend parts of the next four seasons as a Blue Jays reliever saving a career best 13 games in 1995 going 1-5 with a 3.22 ERA in 55 appearances.

In 1993 he was part of the Toronto World Championship team, going 3-2 on the year & making four post season appearances. In the Woirld Series against the Philadelphia Phillies he was the winning pitcher in the wild Game Four 15-14 Blue Jays win.

Castillo was traded to the Chicago White Sox & finished out his ten season career there in 1998. Overall he was 28-23 with 22 career saves, posting a 3.93 ERA, striking out 333 batters walking 179 in 526 innings over 403 games.

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