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Starlin Castro’s ‘new season’ off to good start

Chicago Cubs' StarlCastro watches his double during eighth inning baseball game against HoustAstros Chicago June 21 2013. Chicago w3-1. (AP

Chicago Cubs' Starlin Castro watches his double during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Houston Astros in Chicago, June 21, 2013. Chicago won 3-1. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)

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Updated: June 28, 2013 11:15PM



Starlin Castro headed to Seattle batting .400 this season.

That’s “this season” as in the new season he started fresh Wednesday in Milwaukee after his first game off since 2011. The two-time All-Star’s real season had bottomed out at .228 on Sunday.

“I’m a little bit more relaxed,” said Castro, who added he had no problem with the day off, even though it ended what had been the longest active streak of consecutive games in the National League (269).

“I was struggling a lot,” he said. “The thing that happened to me was I was thinking too much. Because I’ve never had that kind of [extended slump] happen to me. It was like all game, thinking about it.

“When you feel you’re struggling, you try to get five hits in one at-bat. That’s what happened to me.”

Since getting the two-day breather (the Cubs didn’t play Monday), Castro is 4-for-10 in two games with a double. Manager Dale Sveum isn’t quite ready to declare Castro’s problems solved.

“A little better,” Sveum said of Castro’s performance during victories Wednesday and Thursday against the Brewers. “There’s still a lot of movement forward [where he has to be] able to get the bat head to that position when those fastballs get there.”

For now, Castro’s happy with so-far-so-good.

“I let all those things out of my mind,” he said. “Just playing baseball, one at-bat at a time, don’t try to [get back to] .300 in one game. Just keep positive every day. It’s like I started a new season.”

The Cubs open a three-game interleague series Friday night in Seattle.



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