<
>

A convincing Castro in starting lineup

MILWAUKEE -- The power of persuasion worked in Chicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro's favor as he convinced manager Rick Renteria he didn't need a day off. Originally slated not to start on Sunday for the first time this season, Castro ended up in the lineup, batting fourth.

“He came out of the dugout (Saturday) and said ‘Hey I’m good,’” Renteria relayed. “We have to pick and choose our battles and pick and choose when it’s the right time.”

For Castro, playing two months straight after missing most of spring training with a hamstring injury hasn’t worn him out. He says he’s fine.

“I don’t need it,” Castro said Sunday before the Cubs played the Brewers. “It’s still early. My body feels good. I don’t want a day off. ... When I need one, I, for sure, will go and tell him. I don’t need it right now.”

Renteria is deferring to his player in this case as he feels a democracy in the clubhouse isn’t the worst thing. Castro, who is hitting .277 with seven home runs and 26 RBIs, has started every game this year and started all but three last season.

“When we as manager and coaches are on the same page (with the player), when you’re thinking the same way and both feel it then we’ll find that time for him,” Renteria said.

Castro is hitting .206 with four walks in the first nine games of the Cubs; current road trip, which ends on Sunday.