Hugo Pedro Castellanos Sánchez
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 4", Weight 225 lb.
Hugo Castellanos pitched his 15th pro season in 2014.
Castellanos signed with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as a free agent in 1996 but never appeared in their system. He was injured in 1997, then struggled in 1998 in the Mexican League, walking 15 and allowing 11 hits and 11 runs in 7 2/3 IP for his hometown Nuevo Laredo Owls; he went 0-2. In 1999, Hugo pitched 24 games for Nuevo Laredo and had no decisions and a 6.94 ERA; he walked 24 and gave up 44 hits in 36 1/3 IP.
Despite his unimpressive play in Mexico, Castellanos was signed by the Toronto Blue Jays in early 2000. The move paid off - he was 0-3 with 7 saves and a 1.64 ERA in 29 games for the Hagerstown Suns. Hugo walked 18 in 38 innings and allowed only a .123 average, the South Atlantic League's lowest by a reliever. He was less effective in four outings for the Dunedin Blue Jays with 10 walks and 4 runs in 8 innings.
Castellanos did very well in AA in 2001 with the Tennessee Smokies, going 5-2 with two saves and a 2.51 ERA in 43 games. Opponents hit .224 against him. In 2002, the young right-hander pitched for Tennessee (3-4, 18 Sv, 5.23) and the Syracuse SkyChiefs (4 R in 6 IP, 0-1). Hugo began 2003 with the New Haven Ravens but went 3-7 with a 5.13 ERA and .305 opponent average in 21 games, earning him his release.
Signed by Nuevo Laredo again, Castellanos was 1-1 with a 6.30 ERA for the remainder of the season. He pitched for the Mexican national team when they won Bronze in the 2003 Pan American Games. He started 2004 in Mexico and went 4-2 with a 3.15 ERA in 44 games for the Tijuana Bulls; he gave up only 42 hits in 60 innings in a hitter-dominated circuit. That earned him a third contract in the U.S.
In 2005, Hugo was back in Tijuana, posting a 7-4, 4.82 record while being used primarily as a starting pitcher for the first time in his career. He split 2006 between Tijuana (6-0, Sv, 3.17, 111 K in 110 2/3 IP), West Tenn (0-1, 1.88 in 3 G) and the Iowa Cubs (3 R in 4 IP). He finished third in the Mexican League in ERA and was one strikeout behind league leader Oscar Rivera.
Castellanos also pitched for Mexico in the 2006 Central American and Caribbean Games (1-0, 2.89), helping his country win a Bronze Medal.
Castellanos had a rocky time in the 2008 Caribbean Series, pitching for the Yaquis de Obregón. Entering with a 1-1 tie in the 11th inning against Licey, he let the winning run score. Overall, he allowed 5 hits, 2 walks and 3 runs in 2 2/3 IP in the event.
In the summer of 2008, the veteran went 2-1 with a 5.61 ERA in 28 outings for Memphis. It was his first full season in a US AAA league, but likely his only one. The submariner was Mexico's second-worst hurler in the 2008 Americas Baseball Cup, going 0-1 with a 6.23 ERA; only Arturo Lopez was worse.
In 2009, Castellanos returned to Mexico with the Monterrey Industrials, going 3-4 with a save and a 4.22 ERA in 52 games.