Sources – Seattle Mariners finalize deal for Luis Castillo, will send package highlighted by prospect Noelvi Marte to Cincinnati Reds

The Seattle Mariners are in the process of finalizing a deal for the star pitcher castle louis of the Cincinnati Redssources told ESPN’s Jeff Passan on Friday night.

Minor leaguers Noelvi Marte, Levi Stoudt and Edwin Arroyo are heading to Cincy, sources said, along with the veteran Dylan Moore. Marte, a shortstop, is the highest rated of the bunch, with ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel ranking him 12th among baseball’s top prospects going into the season.

The Mariners, led by a star rookie Julio Rodriguezentered Friday’s action 54-46, 11 games behind first place Houston Astros in the AL West and retaining the second wildcard spot.

Now they are set to add the best arm available before Tuesday’s trade deadline, one that will join an already strong rotation that includes Robbie Ray and Logan Gilbert.

It will be a massive comeback for a Mariners team that hasn’t reached the playoffs since 2001, the longest active drought among North America’s four major professional sports leagues (MLB, NFL, NBA, NHL).

The 29-year-old right-hander Castillo is 4-4 with a 2.86 ERA in 14 starts with the Reds this season and a career 3.62 ERA in six seasons, all with Cincinnati.

Castillo won’t be eligible for free agency until the end of the 2023 season, so the Mariners would have him for at least the rest of this year and all of next.

Castillo rebounded from a career-worst season in 2021, when he lost 16 games and batted a league-high 75 batters. His change has been his best pitch for most of his career, but this year he’s pitching more of his four-seam fastball, and doing so with great success. Opponents sniffed 39% of their swings against his four seams, the highest rate of Castillo’s career and the highest of any pitcher at the majors (minimum 300 four seams thrown).

Castillo has a 1.38 ERA in four starts against the AL this year, second only to the Los Angeles DodgersClayton Kershaw (0.69) among skilled pitchers.

The Reds have moved veteran players for prospects since the lockdown ended earlier this year. In March, they exchanged Eugene Suarez and jesse winker to the Mariners, and on Thursday they traded the outfielder Tyler Naquin and reliever Philippe Diehl to New York food.

They’re leveraging Seattle in that trade, with Marte and Arroyo being ranked among the team’s top 10 prospects ahead of the season by ESPN’s McDaniel.

Marte, 20, spent the year for High-A Everett, hitting .275 with 15 homers and a team-high 62 runs scored and 55 RBI to go along with 13 interceptions coming in Friday.

McDaniel ranked Arroyo, also a shortstop, as Seattle’s eighth-best prospect at the start of the season. The 18-year-old spent the season at Single-A Modesto, hitting .316 with 76 runs, 67 RBIs, 13 home runs and 21 steals.

Stoudt, a 24-year-old right-hander, is 6-6 with a 5.28 ERA in 18 starts for Double-A Arkansas this season.

And the versatile Moore has spent the last four major league seasons in Seattle. He’s hitting .197 with five home runs and 16 RBIs this year.

Cincinnati infielder Brandon Dry could also be moved before Tuesday’s deadline, along with several Reds relievers.

ESPN’s Jesse Rogers contributed to this report.

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