CHICAGO -- June has been a cruel month for Chicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro.
Casto, the 22-year old centerpiece of the team’s future, has hit just .230 with 1 home run and 2 RBIs since June 1. Those numbers beg the question, could a day or two on the bench be coming soon for the young player who has yet to miss a game in 2012?
“It’s a possibility I’ve thought about,” said manager Dale Sveum. “That might be coming pretty close because he is pressing a little bit, but he is a huge asset on the field every day.”
That is the problem all three managers Castro played for have had to deal with since his big league career began on May 7, 2010.
“It’s is an idea you think about all the time, giving everyday players a day off,” said Sveum. “It is just hard to do when you are not winning a lot of ballgames and you take your best hitter out of the lineup.”
In Castro’s case, he would never ask for time off.
“You are right, sometime you need a day off not just for the body but for the mind, “ said Castro. “For me right now I feel pretty good even though I’m not hitting. Right now I don’t need (days off). (Sveum) has a lot of years in baseball, when he (thinks) I need to sit, I will.”
The idea of sitting on the bench and getting a day of verbal instruction from Sveum and his staff intrigues Castro.
”I understand watching can help you learn, but I belong on the field helping my team win,” Castro said. “When we have a team day off, I get my rest at my house. Even if I start on the bench, I will somehow get in the game late to help us win.”
Castro was riding an eight-game hitting streak, while batting .382 during that period of games before slumping on June 1. The shortstop[s defense has improved dramatically since the third week of the season; Castro has been doing extra work on defense with coach Pat Listach on a daily basis.