Castellanos plans to take the $$ and run

Published 5:25 pm Friday, November 5, 2021

CINCINNATI (AP) — Cincinnati Reds star outfielder Nick Castellanos exercised the opt-out clause in his contract and is a free agent, the team said Friday.

The Reds right fielder opted out of the final two years and $34 million remaining on his deal after having the best season of his nine-year career.

The team’s announcement came one day after veteran catcher Tucker Barnhart was traded to the Detroit Tigers for an infield prospect.

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The 29-year-old Castellanos was a first-time All-Star in 2021. He batted .309 with 34 home runs and led the Reds with 100 RBIs. He is a career .278 hitter with 168 homers in parts of nine seasons with the Reds, Tigers and Cubs.

He had signed a $64 million, four-year deal.

Castellanos entered a crowded free agent pool that includes former MVPs Freddie Freeman and Kris Bryant.