Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro’s defense is a work in progress
BY TONI GINNETTI firstname.lastname@example.org April 22, 2012 8:26PM
The Cubs’ Starlin Castro grabs his elbow in pain after being hit by a pitch in the seventh inning Sunday. | Tom Cruze~Sun-Times
The facts: 7:05 p.m., CSN+, 720-AM, 1200-AM.
The pitchers: Jaime Garcia (2-0, 3.06 ERA) vs. Matt Garza (1-1, 3.66 ERA).
THE REST OF THE SERIES
Tuesday: 7:05 p.m., CSN, 720-AM, 1200-AM. Adam Wainwright (0-3, 9.88 ERA) vs. Jeff Samardzija (2-1, 5.71 ERA).
Wednesday: 1:20 p.m., Ch. 9, 720-AM. Lance Lynn (3-0, 1.42 ERA) vs. Chris Volstad (0-2, 6.19 ERA).
Updated: May 24, 2012 8:29AM
Hall of Famer Robin Yount started his career as a shortstop and committed 44 errors in his second season. He followed that with seasons of 31, 26, 30, 25 and 28 errors.
Yount was 18 years old when he broke into the majors, having played only rookie ball before joining the Milwaukee Brewers.
Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro might not equal Yount’s achievements, but his career is starting out the same.
‘‘There aren’t too many shortstops who are 19, 20 or 21 years old who have had outstanding starts to their careers defensively,’’ said Cubs manager Dale Sveum, who also was a shortstop. ‘‘It’s a matter of understanding and learning from those errors that there’s a lot of work to do. It’s a process when you’re dealing with a young guy. It’s not Internet coaching.’’
Castro, 22, committed a major-league-high 29 errors last season after committing 27 in his rookie season in 2010. He has committed seven errors so far this season, but Sveum has made him a personal tutoring project, including showing him what he did wrong in fielding a ground ball that went for an error Saturday.
The Cubs will make another roster move Monday when reliever Michael Bowden arrives. Bowden, a right-hander who hails from Aurora, was part of the trade Saturday that sent center fielder Marlon Byrd to the Boston Red Sox. Sveum said Bowden likely will work in middle relief.
‘‘It’s mix-and-match with our bullpen,’’ Sveum said.
Sveum said the trade was mutually beneficial for the Cubs and Red Sox, who had lost three outfielders to injuries.
‘‘It was [a matter of] where we are,’’ Sveum said. ‘‘We had a chance to get a reliever and the Red Sox really wanted [Byrd], so it’s good for both of us.’’
Center field now will be manned by Tony Campana, Joe Mather and Reed Johnson.
‘‘The way the wind is blowing or in the bigger ballparks, it will be just mix-and-match,’’ Sveum said.
Right-hander Ryan Dempster had hoped to avoid the disabled list after sensing tightness in his right quadriceps two days after start Tuesday in Miami.
‘‘I was throwing a bullpen [session] and threw a pitch, and it grabbed,’’ Dempster said. ‘‘Maybe I did something during the game. But when you’re pitching and the adrenaline is going, you don’t feel it.
‘‘When it happened, I figured it would be a few days at least. But [the DL] is insurance to not rush [back] and make it any worse.’’