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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Mooney: Now batting sixth or seventh ... Starlin Castro?

So easy to bat sixth or seventh, even a child can do it.

But Sveum gave a reality check on Monday when he was asked where Castro makes sense in a lineup.

“(With) the way he hits – not really working counts and working walks – in a real world and a prolific offense he’d probably be more towards the sixth and seventh spots,” Sveum said.

Castro has been hitting fifth behind Rizzo and Alfonso Soriano in a makeshift lineup. He had never really struggled like this before at the big-league level, going 0-for-21 at one point during the last road trip and watching his average fall almost 40 points since the middle of June.

“I don’t think he really knows where he’s hitting in the lineup or anything, so that makes me a little more comfortable with (moving him around),” Sveum said. “He’s kind of a cut-and-slasher and no matter where he is in the lineup it’s not really going to change his approach right now.”

...For as much as the critics have worried about Castro’s defense, his swing could be the major project for this winter. But you can’t force it, even if it seems to be in the best interests of the franchise. 

“People can say what they want about where you are in the lineup: ‘I got to do this. I got to do that,’” Sveum said. “But (it’s) the personalities of the hitter. You can’t expect anybody to take what they are and put them in the leadoff spot and expect them to take more pitches.

“Or hit fifth and think they’re going to do this or hit second and (make them) take pitches because the leadoff guy’s going to steal bases or whatever. You can’t ask people to do that, especially at this stage of his career and really the kind of hitter that he is. You’re asking way too much.”

Repoz Posted: August 14, 2012 at 07:18 AM | 4 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cubs, sabermetrics

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   1. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: August 14, 2012 at 11:08 AM (#4207936)
Starlin has been one of the more frustrating aspects of the Cubs this year, given that we already knew they were going to be terrible and set expectations accordingly low. To see Starlin fail to take a step forward offensively in 2012 - and really, to see him take a step back offensively - has been a huge disappointment since he's supposed to be one of the key components of the next good Cub teams.
   2. McCoy Posted: August 14, 2012 at 02:40 PM (#4208112)
But Starlin was suppposed to be the joy of this season!
   3. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: August 14, 2012 at 03:05 PM (#4208143)
What's embarrassing is when you're in one of those little leagues were everyone gets a turn at bat and you're hitting 13th in the order.
   4. Walt Davis Posted: August 15, 2012 at 08:38 AM (#4208600)
Through age 22, at least 800 PA, post-expansion, walk rate worse than 1 per 18 PA by OPS+:

Horner 129
Claudell 106
Brett 106
Castro 103
Baines 103
D Roberts 101
Buckner 100
Baldelli 99
Templeton 99
Francoeur 98
Delmon 96
Pudge 2 96
Cardenal 96
...several more
Reyes 83
Sosa 82

I'll be OK if he turns into Brett, Sosa, Reyes, Pudge or Horner. But I suppose none of those guys would be disastrous hitters as a SS and even league-average-ish at 2B/3B/CF. But I'm guessing his 2013 list of ZiPS comps won't be as nice as 2012 was.

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