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Sveum: Castro can’t learn from mistakes sitting on bench

Updated: August 18, 2013 9:05PM



A contrite Starlin Castro was in the Cubs’ lineup Sunday against the St. Louis Cardinals, with manager Dale Sveum saying his shortstop won’t learn from his latest mental mistake by sitting on the bench.

‘‘The way I look at it is obviously he had enough punishment, if that’s the right word,’’ Sveum said. ‘‘To be embarrassed on national TV and with what’s written in the papers is plenty enough.’’

Sveum benched Castro on Saturday after the fifth inning when Castro caught Matt Carpenter’s pop-up in short left field but didn’t pay attention to runner John Jay at third base. The umpire signaled an infield fly out, but Jay tagged up and scored.

Castro admitted his mistake after the game and apologized to the team. He said after the game Sunday that he was thankful for the chance to play again.

‘‘It was pretty good what he did,’’ he said of Sveum’s decision. ‘‘It’s tough sometimes the next day — you feel a little nervous for the first ground ball because I didn’t want to make an error.

‘‘I try to go out there and be positive and don’t let it happen again.’’

Sveum said he doesn’t want Castro to be unfairly scrutinized now.

‘‘This kid’s been pretty good. Obviously there was a big blunder [Saturday], but we’re not going to start nitpicking on him.

‘‘These things happen from time to time, and they’re getting less and less. But I don’t think this kid can get better by not playing [Sunday] and understanding the adversity we all go through in the game.’’

Sveum met with Castro after Saturday’s game and again before Sunday’s.

‘‘He knows. He was obviously very remorseful and knows what happened,’’ Sveum said.

Said Castro: ‘‘I didn’t say anything to him because I was wrong. It was me who was wrong. I made the mistake. I put it on myself that that can’t happen anymore.’’

On Sunday, Castro made a leaping catch of a Matt Holiday liner in the seventh. He also had a hit in the third to end his 0-for-16 slump.

‘‘Obviously he’s struggled at the plate as well, and sometimes if things continue, obviously it’s going to be a year you look back on and you want to get rid of — like all of us in our careers,’’ Sveum said. ‘‘But he’s a guy who has to perform for us and be a championship player when we get to that stage of the organization.

‘‘The one thing I don’t want the public to think by any means [is] that this is a bad kid. He’s a great kid and great human being and tries to do the best he can. We have to get that out of him somehow.’’

Email: tginnetti@suntimes.com

Twitter: @toniginnetti



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