ST. LOUIS – Former Detroit Tigers outfielder Nicholas Castellanos was a unique type of hero in his first game with the Chicago Cubs, breaking up a no-hitter and recording the only hit of the entire game for his new team.
Castellanos batted second for the Cubs on Thursday as they battled NL Central co-leader St. Louis for sole possession of first place.
Castellanos walked in his first plate appearance and struck out to lead off the fourth inning. When he came to the dish with two outs in the top of the sixth, the Cubs were still without a hit against Cardinals starter Jack Flaherty.
Flaherty quickly got ahead in the count 1-2, but Castellanos fouled off a couple of two-strike sliders and laid off another before hitting the seventh pitch of the at-bat to right field for a single.
That would end up being Chicago's only hit of the game. Kyle Schwarber was the only other player to reach base, walking in the fifth inning.
It was by far the most meaningful game Castellanos has played in since 2016, but he likely didn't expect to be an offensive hero with a single, a walk, a strikeout and a line out.
Meanwhile, the Tigers' offense exploded Wednesday against the Los Angeles Angels after Castellanos was traded.
Detroit scored nine runs on nine hits and five walks, including a home run and two walks from catcher Jake Rogers in his second career game.
Wednesday was the Tigers' best offensive output since July 12, a 12-8 win over the Royals. Castellanos hit a double and a single, and struck out three times in six at-bats that game.