Manager Dale Sveum has talk with Starlin Castro
BY TONI GINNETTI firstname.lastname@example.org August 11, 2012 8:52PM
Chicago Cubs Vs Cincinnati Reds. 8Th-Inning- Chicago Cubs No.15 Darwin Barney can't make the catch off the bat of Cincinnati Reds No.28 Chris Heisey. August 11, 2012. I Scott Stewart~Sun-Times
REDS AT CUBS
The facts: 1:20 p.m., Ch. 9, 720-AM.
The pitchers: Johnny Cueto
(14-6, 2.58 ERA) vs. Brooks Raley (0-1, 15.75).
Updated: September 13, 2012 6:26AM
Shortstop Starlin Castro has improved by ‘‘leaps and bounds,’’ but that doesn’t make him immune from sessions with manager Dale Sveum, such as the one the two had Saturday.
‘‘It went well,’’ Sveum said. ‘‘He was, I don’t know if ‘remorseful’ is the right word, but he knew he made a big mistake [on the basepaths in Friday’s 10-8 loss to the Reds].’’
The mistake came when Castro tried to steal second, lost sight of a single to right field by Josh Vitters and was thrown out at third in the sixth inning Friday against the Cincinnati Reds. The Cubs trailed 8-3 at the time.
Sveum was visibly upset after the game but waited until Saturday to talk with Castro.
‘‘He talked to me about that play and that situation,’’ Castro said. ‘‘Down five runs, you have to be 100 percent sure if you’re going to steal, and you have to know where the ball is.’’
‘‘I don’t treat him any different than anybody else,’’ Sveum said. ‘‘He just happens to be a big focal point because he’s our shortstop, and the shortstop is going to be here a long time.
‘‘The guy’s made leaps and bounds defensively and has done a good job as far as concentration most of the time. A lot of times, we — myself included, as well as the media — blow him up as much as anybody else. Some other people have made some pretty bad mistakes, too, but it doesn’t get blown up as much.
‘‘There’s that fine line [of still being only 22], but even he admits that [being young] is no excuse for anything that went on.’’
Touted Cuban prospect Jorge Soler made his debut Friday with Class A Peoria and went 1-for-4 with two RBI. Soler was promoted after spending less than a month in rookie ball.
‘‘He needs to learn his teammates and get acclimated to the U.S.,’’ director of player development Jason McLeod said. ‘‘So far, he’s handled it well.’’
The Cubs’ first-round pick in June, high school outfielder Albert Almora, has a seven-game hitting streak in the Mesa rookie league and is hitting .262.
McLeod also said right-hander Arodys Vizcaino, who was acquired from the Atlanta Braves in the deal for left-hander Paul Maholm and outfielder Reed Johnson, is on track to begin spring training on time as he recovers from Tommy John surgery on his pitching elbow.
The news wasn’t good, though, for right-hander Jake Brigham, who was acquired from the Texas Rangers in the deal for catcher Geovany Soto. He was put on the disabled list at Class AA Tennessee with arm problems. He was 0-2 with a 19.64 ERA in two starts since being acquired.
Right-hander Lendy Castillo was activated Saturday after missing nearly three months with a strained left groin. Left-hander Scott Maine was optioned to
Class AAA Iowa.
† Center fielder Brett Jackson didn’t play Saturday because of soreness stemming from an outfield collision Friday.