Rizzo takes blame for apparent Castro gaffe

ATLANTA -- Anthony Rizzo is not only a power hitter, he’s a peace maker.

Rizzo hit his second home run in just his sixth game of the season in Monday's 4-1 Cubs victory over the Atlanta Braves, but his best work might have been saving shortstop Starlin Castro from the doghouse again.

In the second inning, Castro seemed to make yet another mental gaffe when he fielded a Dan Uggla ground ball and then hesitated before making the throw. When he finally did throw the ball, Uggla beat out the play by a step.

After the inning, manager Dale Sveum went directly over to Castro to have a word with him. It was then that Rizzo stepped in.

“Rizzo came to his rescue right away,” Sveum said. “Rizzo told him to give him time to get to the bag. He got caught probably trying to get too much ground and told somebody to take their time when they got a ball deep in the hole. It was one of those things that I apologized to Castro after.”

On the play, Rizzo was shifted toward second base and was late getting to the bag.

“It was my fault in my opinion,” Rizzo said. “I told him before that to give me a little time. That’s just me not knowing Uggla’s speed. I thought I had time to get there.”