A 2019 Atlantic League All-Star performer will return to the York Revolution in 2020.
Infielder Henry Castillo is set to return to the Revs after hitting .293 last season, with 117 hits, 47 extra-base hits, a career-high 14 homers, 56 runs scored and 67 RBIs.
The announcement of Castillo's signing was made by Revs manager Mark Mason on Monday night's edition of Revs Hot Stove Weekly presented by Shipley Energy on SportsRadio 98.9 FM & 1350 AM WOYK.
Mason also announced the return of reliever Josh Smoker to York.
The Revs' season was originally slated to start on April 30, but the Atlantic League has already announced that the beginning of the 2020 season will be delayed indefinitely because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Henry Castillo: Castillo, 25, returns to York for his third season with the Revolution. The seven-year pro also posted a pair of career milestones last year, collecting his 500th hit and playing in his 500th game.
The Dominican Republic native impressed in 44 games with York in 2018 after joining the team that July. The switch-hitter batted .310 with nine doubles, three triples, two home runs and 22 RBIs while seeing time at second base, third base and shortstop.
Castillo spent his first five pro seasons in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization and batted over .300 in each of his first two years in the United States. He's a career .275 hitter in seven seasons as a pro.
“He’s such a fun guy to be around,” Mason said in a news release issued by the Revs. “Not to mention his play on the field, as an All-Star last year, a switch-hitter with power both ways. He’s played a really good second and third base for us while filling in at short at times. He gives us versatility in the lineup and is another guy that plays hard and definitely has fun every day.”
Josh Smoker: Smoker, 31, enters his 13th pro season. The big league veteran came to York last year in August after starting the season at Triple-A Oklahoma City in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. Smoker made 11 appearances for York, including two starts, going 0-1 with a 6.05 ERA while striking out 17 in 19 1/3 innings. As a reliever, the lefty had a 3.75 ERA in nine appearances (12 innings), in addition to a pair of scoreless, hitless outings during the postseason.
A first-round draft pick out of Calhoun High School in Georgia in 2007 by the Washington Nationals, Smoker spent his first six pro seasons in the Nationals organization, reaching High-A Potomac. The New York Mets signed the 6-foot, 1-inch southpaw in 2015. A year later, Smoker made his major league debut with the Mets on Aug. 19, 2016, facing the San Francisco Giants. Smoker finished 2016 with a 3-0 record and 4.70 ERA in 20 outings at the MLB level. Smoker made the Mets opening-day roster in 2017 and contributed a career-high 54 appearances for the club, striking out 68 batters in 56 1/3 innings. Smoker has also made MLB appearances for the Detroit Tigers and Pittsburgh Pirates in 2018.
In 82 MLB appearances, Smoker is 4-2 with a 5.35 ERA and 97 strikeouts. In his 549 1/3 career pro innings, Smoker is 30-30 with a 4.62 ERA and 585 punch outs.
“I’m so excited to have Josh back,” Mason said in the news release. “Last year he was working his way back and did a really fine job out of the bullpen for us. We’re looking at him to have that same role that he had in the big leagues as a left-handed reliever and give him the opportunity to shine and do the things he’s most comfortable with.”
The Revs will unveil more signings at 6 p.m. Monday on Revs Hot Stove Weekly.
Reach Steve Heiser at firstname.lastname@example.org. The York Revolution provided information for this story.