The Yankees added some speed to their roster on Thursday, acquiring outfielder Tim Locastro from the D-backs in exchange for Double-A pitcher Keegan Curtis.
Locastro’s calling card is his running ability. Statcast measures his average sprint speed this season at 30.7 feet per second — well above the elite 30.0 feet-per-second mark, with the MLB average at 27.0 — and he is tied for second among all MLB players with Washington’s Trea Turner. Locastro was 26-for-26 in stolen-base attempts entering this season, although he is only 5-for-8 in 2021.
The Yankees haven’t had a lot of speed on their roster, with only Tyler Wade and Brett Gardner averaging better than 28.0 feet per second in terms of sprint speed. The club entered Thursday ranking last in the Majors in steals (17) and tied for last in triples (five).
Locastro, a right-handed batter who will turn 29 on July 14, is a New York native. He was born in Syracuse, attended high school in Auburn and went on to play at Ithaca College. He has spent parts of five seasons in the Majors with the Dodgers and D-backs, slashing .234/.339/.324 with four home runs in 480 plate appearances. Locastro’s career hit-by-pitch rate of 7.5% is the highest all-time for a player with that many trips to the plate.
Defensively, Locastro has experience at all three outfield positions, spending the majority of his time this year in center (27 games, 20 starts). His career Outs Above Average, per Statcast, is plus-five.
The Yankees drafted Curtis in the 22nd round in 2018. The right-hander had been playing this year at Double-A Somerset, posting a 3.94 ERA over 12 relief appearances, while racking up 27 strikeouts in 16 innings.