From BR Bullpen
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 2", Weight 180-210 lb.
Javier Castillo is in his 7th minor league season in 2008. He played for Panama in the first World Baseball Classic.
Castillo began his baseball career with the 2002 DSL White Sox, hitting .193/.297/.239. He improved to .238/.342/.342 with the same club in 2003. In 2004, Castillo moved up to the Bristol Sox and batted .272/.374/.408 with 20 errors in 60 games. He led Appalachian League shortstops in errors and tied for the lead with 90 putouts. Baseball America rated him as the #17 prospect in the league.
Javier split 2005 between the Kannapolis Intimidators (.226/.279/.242) and Great Falls White Sox (.219/.303/.287). He was on Panama's roster for the 2006 World Baseball Classic. Down 6-4 with two outs in the bottom of the 9th against the Cuban national team, he pinch-ran for Audes de Leon. He advanced on a Damaso Espino hit and a fielder's choice before scoring on an Olmedo Saenz single. He stayed in at second base, replacing Yoni Lasso. In the 10th, Castillo grounded out against Yuniesky Maya. The next game, he started at third base and went 0 for 2 against Shairon Martis, who tossed a no-hitter.
During the 2006 regular season, Castillo batted .256/.321/.404 for Kannapolis. In 2007, he hit .288/.345/.434 for the Winston-Salem Warthogs and was 1 for 10 with the Charlotte Knights. He had 28 doubles and 29 errors for Winston-Salem and was 8th in the Carolina League in average, only a couple points over Wes Hodges. He moved to third base that season.
Castillo batted .289/.354/.448 with 9 triples for the 2008 Birmingham Barons, tying J.C. Holt for third in the Southern League in three-baggers. He also played 28 games for the Charlotte Knights, hitting .287/.327/.376 and adding another triple.
In the 2008 Americas Baseball Cup, he hit .313/.313/.563 in four games but Panama failed to win a spot at the 2009 Baseball World Cup. In the 2009 World Baseball Classic, he was Panama's third-best hitter after Luis Durango and Carlos Ruiz, going 3 for 8 with a double. The two-bagger, off Johnny Cueto, was Panama's only extra-base hit of the Classic.