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Jilly Bohnson
04-30-2010, 04:47 PM
This probably shouldn't just get lost in the other thread...


Chicago Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said Friday he has no doubt that shortstop and top prospect Starlin Castro will join the big-league team this season, but he wouldn't guess at a date.

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Castro is hitting .353 in 20 games for Double-A Tennessee.

"He's coming along very well," Hendry said on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000. "[Assistant GM] Randy Bush just visited the Double-A club for about five games, and we certainly feel he's going to be a very, very good player for a long time.

"He's swinging the bat well and working on all the nuances that will make him successful when he gets here. I don't have any doubts you'll see him in Chicago this season, but to put an exact date on it would be foolish."

Hendry said he's talked to current shortstop Ryan Theriot about changing positions when Castro is ready.

"Ryan and I had some good, honest chats that the day may come when Castro arrives that he'll have to move off short," Hendry said. "And I think Ryan was receptive to that.

"You just want to give him enough notice to help him get ready for that when that day comes. Ryan is capable of being a .300 hitter and a very good infielder when he does move."

You have to imagine that after the first injury or after another month of 2b underperforming that we'll see him. And at the very least we see him September 1st.

Tehjosha
04-30-2010, 04:49 PM
This probably shouldn't just get lost in the other thread...



You have to imagine that after the first injury or after another month of 2b underperforming that we'll see him. And at the very least we see him September 1st.

Or a trade of Theriot, which is my hope.

Jilly Bohnson
04-30-2010, 04:58 PM
At this point though there's a very real possibility that Castro and Theriot are our two best middle infielders. I mean yeah you'll probably get something for Theriot, and you'd like to shuttle him off before he starts making big money, but for this year we might be best off with a Castro-Theriot MI for the rest of the year.

windycityD
04-30-2010, 05:01 PM
This probably shouldn't just get lost in the other thread...



You have to imagine that after the first injury or after another month of 2b underperforming that we'll see him. And at the very least we see him September 1st.

2b is not a problem (yeah, Baker's had a meh start so far), nor is SS. The current (and imo, not for long if this keeps up) #3 and 4 hitters in this line up are, as well as leaving too m men on base in scoring position. Castro wont solve those issues- now, next week, or in July. Without run production from Lee and A Ram, the offense will continue to sputter.

Hendry, along with the media, is talking about a hot spec b/c the club he assembled at this level has gaping holes and the ready "fix" is to keep talking about Castro. Yawn.

Jilly Bohnson
04-30-2010, 05:09 PM
2b is not a problem (yeah, Baker's had a meh start so far), nor is SS. The current (and imo, not for long if this keeps up) #3 and 4 hitters in this line up are, as well as leaving too m men on base in scoring position. Castro wont solve those issues- now, next week, or in July. Without run production from Lee and A Ram, the offense will continue to sputter.

Hendry, along with the media, is talking about a hot spec b/c the club he assembled at this level has gaping holes and the ready "fix" is to keep talking about Castro. Yawn.

Yeah, but Lee and Ramirez are good bets to bounce back and produce well above average for their position. Fontenot has seemingly sacrificed all power and patience to just flick the bat at the ball this year. And Baker is more of a utility guy than a 2b, as he's never really shown much against righties. Castro's MLE is much better than what either of them have done so far.

windycityD
04-30-2010, 05:18 PM
Yeah, but Lee and Ramirez are good bets to bounce back and produce well above average for their position. Fontenot has seemingly sacrificed all power and patience to just flick the bat at the ball this year. And Baker is more of a utility guy than a 2b, as he's never really shown much against righties. Castro's MLE is much better than what either of them have done so far.

Until A Ram shows he can actually put a bat on the ball again, I'd drop him to 6th and bump Soto up to clean up, AS to #5. Soto is walking and hitting. Right now, you can't have two struggling hitters back to back in the middle your order, it's ****ing insane on Lou's part.

I like Castro, lots, and hope he gets the job full time either this July should we tank or starting next season & after another fall league stint. He clearly has the skills to be a good SS. I'm just not listening to all this chatter about him b/c it's not based on addressing a pressing personnel/ production need to this point.

Captain Obvious
04-30-2010, 05:19 PM
Love how Jimbo uses AVG... love it.

Captain Obvious
04-30-2010, 05:24 PM
Until A Ram shows he can actually put a bat on the ball again, I'd drop him to 6th and bump Soto up to clean up, AS to #5. Soto is walking and hitting. Right now, you can't have two struggling hitters back to back in the middle your order, it's ****ing insane on Lou's part.

I like Castro, lots, and hope he gets the job full time either this July should we tank or starting next season & after another fall league stint. He clearly has the skills to be a good SS. I'm just not listening to all this chatter about him b/c it's not based on addressing a pressing personnel/ production need to this point.

And you leave Lee hitting 3rd? I disagree.

I'd move Soto to 3rd, hit Soriano 2nd, and Byrd 4th.

So we'd have Theriot, AS, Soto, Byrd, Fukudome, Lee, Rami, 2B, P

Ideally you have Theriot hitting 7th or 8th and Fuku 1st, but that's not gonna happen

Mell413
04-30-2010, 05:27 PM
Yeah, but Lee and Ramirez are good bets to bounce back and produce well above average for their position. Fontenot has seemingly sacrificed all power and patience to just flick the bat at the ball this year. And Baker is more of a utility guy than a 2b, as he's never really shown much against righties. Castro's MLE is much better than what either of them have done so far.

I still think Fontenot can hit for enough power. You have said yourself that power is streaky. I think some people over assume that Theriot will be able to shift to 2B without problems.

JimHendrysTummy
04-30-2010, 05:30 PM
And you leave Lee hitting 3rd? I disagree.

I'd move Soto to 3rd, hit Soriano 2nd, and Byrd 4th.

So we'd have Theriot, AS, Soto, Byrd, Fukudome, Lee, Rami, 2B, P

Ideally you have Theriot hitting 7th or 8th and Fuku 1st, but that's not gonna happen

You've got to separate Lee and Rami. That much suck back-to-back is not healthy for our lineup.

redwhitenblue
04-30-2010, 05:32 PM
At least Lee was decent at a point. He was the only offensive player for about 2 weeks this year.

Ramirez has just, flat out, blown.

Captain Obvious
04-30-2010, 05:34 PM
You've got to separate Lee and Rami. That much suck back-to-back is not healthy for our lineup.

Yeah, but then you have to give one of them more AB, and that is not something I want to do at this point.

gocubs2118
04-30-2010, 05:38 PM
I still think Fontenot can hit for enough power. You have said yourself that power is streaky. I think some people over assume that Theriot will be able to shift to 2B without problems.

It might take a couple week of reps but its not like he hasn't ever played 2B before.

scrubs101
04-30-2010, 05:38 PM
2b is not a problem (yeah, Baker's had a meh start so far), nor is SS. The current (and imo, not for long if this keeps up) #3 and 4 hitters in this line up are, as well as leaving too m men on base in scoring position. Castro wont solve those issues- now, next week, or in July. Without run production from Lee and A Ram, the offense will continue to sputter.

Hendry, along with the media, is talking about a hot spec b/c the club he assembled at this level has gaping holes and the ready "fix" is to keep talking about Castro. Yawn.

I don't know about all that. Looks like Castro is 100% going to be the starting SS in 2011 and beyond.......and Theriot could very well be the starting 2B in 2011 and beyond. If Hendry thinks he's ready, why wait to make the change?

Ron!n
04-30-2010, 05:40 PM
Give Lee some time before righting him off. He had a bad week but he had a good game today.

As for Castro, im not sure how capable hes going to be to hit Major League pitching but if he cant then we really dont gain much over a Fonty-Theriot MI.

StrandedCub
04-30-2010, 05:40 PM
I still think Fontenot can hit for enough power. You have said yourself that power is streaky. I think some people over assume that Theriot will be able to shift to 2B without problems.

I really don't think shifting to second will be all that big of a deal. It isn't like he has never played 2B and has to completely learn a position that he knows nothing about. He played 2B quite a bit in the Minors. Will it be tad rough for a week or two? Maybe, maybe not. But I don't see it being a big deal. Footwork for turning a DP is the only major thing he would have to adjust to IMO and I don't see that taking that long for him.

Jilly Bohnson
04-30-2010, 05:54 PM
Until A Ram shows he can actually put a bat on the ball again, I'd drop him to 6th and bump Soto up to clean up, AS to #5. Soto is walking and hitting. Right now, you can't have two struggling hitters back to back in the middle your order, it's ****ing insane on Lou's part.

I like Castro, lots, and hope he gets the job full time either this July should we tank or starting next season & after another fall league stint. He clearly has the skills to be a good SS. I'm just not listening to all this chatter about him b/c it's not based on addressing a pressing personnel/ production need to this point.

Aramis' K's were only a problem for a little over a week, basically a really bad streak. The first 9 games of the year he had 41 PA's, 14 K's. Since, 61 PA's, 10 K's. That's 16%, which is much closer to his career average.

And Lee has just been a bad luck guy. He's got a .207 BABIP, but has still been hitting for power and walking, and only been K'ing a little bit more than normal. Both guys have slumped, but I'm not particularly worried about either. And while Soto should be moved up, and Sori probably as well, I don't think it's time to move Lee or Ramirez down. Even though they've been our worst hitters, they're our best bets moving forward, and with that said they should probalby stay where they are.


I still think Fontenot can hit for enough power. You have said yourself that power is streaky. I think some people over assume that Theriot will be able to shift to 2B without problems.

Power is streaky, but I don't have any faith in Fontenot getting much back. Most of the swings I've seen him put in have been Theriot-eque where he's just slapping at the ball. I don't tnink the power will come back because I think he's fundamentally changed the way he's hit, becoming an aggressive slap hitter instead of the patient semi-power hitter he used to be. Basically, it seems like he's done the reverse of what Theriot did last year, and unless he changes back I don't think he'll be productive.

Doogolas
04-30-2010, 06:05 PM
Aramis' K's were only a problem for a little over a week, basically a really bad streak. The first 9 games of the year he had 41 PA's, 14 K's. Since, 61 PA's, 10 K's. That's 16%, which is much closer to his career average.

And Lee has just been a bad luck guy. He's got a .207 BABIP, but has still been hitting for power and walking, and only been K'ing a little bit more than normal. Both guys have slumped, but I'm not particularly worried about either. And while Soto should be moved up, and Sori probably as well, I don't think it's time to move Lee or Ramirez down. Even though they've been our worst hitters, they're our best bets moving forward, and with that said they should probalby stay where they are.



Power is streaky, but I don't have any faith in Fontenot getting much back. Most of the swings I've seen him put in have been Theriot-eque where he's just slapping at the ball. I don't tnink the power will come back because I think he's fundamentally changed the way he's hit, becoming an aggressive slap hitter instead of the patient semi-power hitter he used to be. Basically, it seems like he's done the reverse of what Theriot did last year, and unless he changes back I don't think he'll be productive.

And you think Theriot is going to continue with a BABIP of .402? Fonty's BABIP is a much more reasonable .333 (though still high) and he's OPSing at .700 while Theriot is at .757. Honestly, even with completely and utterly absurd luck Theriot isn't out hitting Fonty by much. I think if Fonty ever sees some pitches on the inside part of the plate he'll hit for some power. But he's been getting everything away.

Right this second it just comes down to which of them is going to field better at 2B. And really, Baker/Fonty together is going to outproduce Theriot at the plate. As bad as Baker has been, he's absolutely DESTROYED lefties still. 1.073. So I'd rather trade Theriot and hold onto the Fonty/Baker platoon cause it's working pretty well.

NORTH10
04-30-2010, 06:12 PM
Theriot has done a nice job at the lead-off spot this year. He is putting the ball in play.

In comparison to last year...his contact is up 4%, his swinging strikes are a percent down from last year. When he does make contact, his BA is .402...up 80 points from last year. Considering he is 10% above average in contact over the rest of the MLB right now, coupled with a 4% first pitch swing compared to an MLB average of 8%, as a leadoff hitter, it is exactly what you want right now.

If Castro was to come up, Theriot should still be playing almost everyday as that lead off hitter. It has worked out. With the adjustments he's made with Jaramillo, I wouldn't be surprised to see him continue to exceed expecations. Look at the tape from last year compared to this year. This year, Theriot has a control load with his hands, much more relaxed and controlled with his stride, and is in a position ready to hit the ball, much like Byrd is. The 5 step approach is working real nicely right now for Theriot.

Doogolas
04-30-2010, 06:16 PM
Theriot has done a nice job at the lead-off spot this year. He is putting the ball in play.

In comparison to last year...his contact is up 4%, his swinging strikes are a percent down from last year. When he does make contact, his BA is .402...up 80 points from last year. Considering he is 10% above average in contact over the rest of the MLB right now, coupled with a 4% first pitch swing compared to an MLB average of 8%, as a leadoff hitter, it is exactly what you want right now.

If Castro was to come up, Theriot should still be playing almost everyday.

BABIP being up 80 points is not a good thing. That shows him as getting very, very lucky. If his BABIP was the same and he was hitting as well as he was that would be something to be very happy about.

ReJo
04-30-2010, 07:13 PM
There's no need for Castro now. Theriot and Fontenot are doing fine up the middle. It's not even May and the Cubs arent that far out of it to start thinking about getting him some ML experience. Just wait til September to get him some experience so you don't start his arbitration clock early

cubsneedmiracle
04-30-2010, 07:22 PM
There's no need for Castro now. Theriot and Fontenot are doing fine up the middle. It's not even May and the Cubs arent that far out of it to start thinking about getting him some ML experience. Just wait til September to get him some experience so you don't start his arbitration clock early

Pretty sure Super Two time is usually starting in June..

WOwolfOL
04-30-2010, 10:47 PM
You've got to separate Lee and Rami. That much suck back-to-back is not healthy for our lineup.

This is our biggest offensive problem, by far. We have 6 regulars hitting pretty well and these 2 are just not coming through consistently enough.

Lee needs to start going oppo again.

Solid Snake
04-30-2010, 10:55 PM
Should have just signed Kelly Johnson. Would have saved us from rushing/potentially ruining Starlin Castro, which happens to be much more important than coddling the feelings of the Fonty/Baker platoon and its fanboys.

Doogolas
04-30-2010, 11:12 PM
Should have just signed Kelly Johnson. Would have saved us from rushing/potentially ruining Starlin Castro, which happens to be much more important than coddling the feelings of the Fonty/Baker platoon and its fanboys.

The reason the Fonty/Baker platoon has "fanboys" is that it's performing very well.

Combining Fonty vs righties with Baker vs lefties gives you a line of:

.300/.352/.438 for an OPS of .790 and they've been worth a combined 2.6 runs on defense. So they've been very, very good for us. People should really stop complaining. If Lou just used them right and never let one hit the same side pitching unless ABSOLUTELY necessary, they'd both be doing their jobs and we'd be good to go. Sure Kelly Johnson would be better. But it's not like 2B is even close to a problem for us right now.

RedHeadsRule
04-30-2010, 11:52 PM
I'm not sure who I'd rather have at 2b, Theriot or Fontenot, when Castro gets called up. I go back and forth on that. But it sure sounds like Hendry has made his choice.

I'm actually quite surprised Hendry flat out said Castro will be the SS at some point this season and Theriot would then move to 2B. I was expecting more of a "Castro is doing very well, but we are happy with what Theriot and Fontenot/Baker have been doing also" response. What he said doesn't show much confidence in Fontenot, and he has to be wondering how much longer he'll be with the team.

scrubs101
05-01-2010, 12:46 AM
I'm not sure who I'd rather have at 2b, Theriot or Fontenot, when Castro gets called up. I go back and forth on that. But it sure sounds like Hendry has made his choice.

I'm actually quite surprised Hendry flat out said Castro will be the SS at some point this season and Theriot would then move to 2B. I was expecting more of a "Castro is doing very well, but we are happy with what Theriot and Fontenot/Baker have been doing also" response. What he said doesn't show much confidence in Fontenot, and he has to be wondering how much longer he'll be with the team.

Hendry's comments to the public seem like they are usually pretty well thought out. Him saying that kinda tells me Castro is coming up sooner rather than later.

Solid Snake
05-01-2010, 12:52 AM
The reason the Fonty/Baker platoon has "fanboys" is that it's performing very well.

Combining Fonty vs righties with Baker vs lefties gives you a line of:

.300/.352/.438 for an OPS of .790 and they've been worth a combined 2.6 runs on defense. So they've been very, very good for us. People should really stop complaining. If Lou just used them right and never let one hit the same side pitching unless ABSOLUTELY necessary, they'd both be doing their jobs and we'd be good to go. Sure Kelly Johnson would be better. But it's not like 2B is even close to a problem for us right now.

I know they're not the problem at all. But more offense, on the cheap, is never something you turn away. And i posted repeatedly in the FA thread how last year was fluky bad for KJ, and that his adjusted wOBA was something like .368. There was no way that platoon was putting up a .368 wOBA.
Regardless of how good the platoon is, Fonty's bat off the bench wouldTracy unnecessary. And Hendry wouldn't be rushing Castro, which is my primary concern right now.

Doogolas
05-01-2010, 12:59 AM
I know they're not the problem at all. But more offense, on the cheap, is never something you turn away. And i posted repeatedly in the FA thread how last year was fluky bad for KJ, and that his adjusted wOBA was something like .368. There was no way that platoon was putting up a .368 wOBA.
Regardless of how good the platoon is, Fonty's bat off the bench wouldTracy unnecessary. And Hendry wouldn't be rushing Castro, which is my primary concern right now.

Eh, I don't think it was that big of a deal. Johnson is solid and everything but he's not anything special. If Castro was gonna be rushed, Johnson wouldn't have stopped it I don't think. There's no use assuming Johnson would be hitting the same way he is now. And there's no way ANYBODY could have guessed he'd hit like this either. :shrug: I think it was a perfectly acceptable decision.

jiggin
05-01-2010, 02:18 AM
here we go again. Cubs nation builds up a player SO HIGH that he almost is certain to disappoint.

Overvaluing cubs prospects and making the great ones never be able to live up to the hype are things Cubs fans are VERY good at over the last 6+ years...ever since they started winning more in the middle 2000's.

Doogolas
05-01-2010, 02:50 AM
here we go again. Cubs nation builds up a player SO HIGH that he almost is certain to disappoint.

Overvaluing cubs prospects and making the great ones never be able to live up to the hype are things Cubs fans are VERY good at over the last 6+ years...ever since they started winning more in the middle 2000's.

That's mostly because the Cubs **** with them. But some prospects actually DO live up to the hype. Just cause we've had some bad luck doesn't mean none will.

Milnertime
05-01-2010, 03:10 AM
BABIP being up 80 points is not a good thing. That shows him as getting very, very lucky. If his BABIP was the same and he was hitting as well as he was that would be something to be very happy about.
You are putting too much stress on his BABIP being what it is, IMO.

It's a good indicator, and in general, high BABIPs are hard to sustain. However, Theriot's approach lends itself to maintaining a better than expected BABIP, just because he's making a living hitting soft line drives to the opposite field. Unless the defenses start to change their approach to him, I don't think we're going to see major regression.

Obviously, he's not going to be in the .400s all year, but he could stay above .370 without it being lucky.

Jilly Bohnson
05-01-2010, 04:41 AM
And you think Theriot is going to continue with a BABIP of .402? Fonty's BABIP is a much more reasonable .333 (though still high) and he's OPSing at .700 while Theriot is at .757. Honestly, even with completely and utterly absurd luck Theriot isn't out hitting Fonty by much. I think if Fonty ever sees some pitches on the inside part of the plate he'll hit for some power. But he's been getting everything away.

Right this second it just comes down to which of them is going to field better at 2B. And really, Baker/Fonty together is going to outproduce Theriot at the plate. As bad as Baker has been, he's absolutely DESTROYED lefties still. 1.073. So I'd rather trade Theriot and hold onto the Fonty/Baker platoon cause it's working pretty well.

Theriot we can probably pretty safely rely on for something along the lines of .300/.370/.350. I mean he's not going to hit .330 all year, but on the same token he's probably going to walk more than the 35ish times he's currently on pace to. I don't think there's that much difference between what he and F-aker(and no that's not some lame derogatory nickname, I just get sick of typing 'Fontenot-Baker') would produce, so I'm not going to get worked up either way. I figure Theriot will do it more with defense and OBP, while F-aker will have a good deal more power. If you can get something good for Theriot, you move him and keep F-aker, if you can't, then you use Theriot at 2b because he's probably a safer bet to produce.

The Stick
05-01-2010, 11:24 AM
You are putting too much stress on his BABIP being what it is, IMO.

It's a good indicator, and in general, high BABIPs are hard to sustain. However, Theriot's approach lends itself to maintaining a better than expected BABIP, just because he's making a living hitting soft line drives to the opposite field. Unless the defenses start to change their approach to him, I don't think we're going to see major regression.

Obviously, he's not going to be in the .400s all year, but he could stay above .370 without it being lucky.

This is a great point. BABIP isn't complete good luck when its high and bad luck when its low.

Doogolas
05-01-2010, 01:07 PM
Theriot we can probably pretty safely rely on for something along the lines of .300/.370/.350. I mean he's not going to hit .330 all year, but on the same token he's probably going to walk more than the 35ish times he's currently on pace to. I don't think there's that much difference between what he and F-aker(and no that's not some lame derogatory nickname, I just get sick of typing 'Fontenot-Baker') would produce, so I'm not going to get worked up either way. I figure Theriot will do it more with defense and OBP, while F-aker will have a good deal more power. If you can get something good for Theriot, you move him and keep F-aker, if you can't, then you use Theriot at 2b because he's probably a safer bet to produce.

That's pretty much what I was saying. It's a matter of who you think is going to give you better defense because from the bat side they'll probably give you very similar production. Unless Fontenot really finds his stroke and starts hitting for power. Also, I assumed F-aker wasn't some derogatory thing lol.

Jilly Bohnson
05-01-2010, 01:25 PM
That's pretty much what I was saying. It's a matter of who you think is going to give you better defense because from the bat side they'll probably give you very similar production. Unless Fontenot really finds his stroke and starts hitting for power. Also, I assumed F-aker wasn't some derogatory thing lol.

I was just afraid someone would think it was the new DP Lee or something. :laugh2:

Doogolas
05-01-2010, 01:31 PM
I was just afraid someone would think it was the new DP Lee or something. :laugh2:

:laugh2: Gotcha. That would be pretty God damn funny.

Reese's
05-02-2010, 05:46 PM
If Castro keeps hitting the way he has been then he'll be up in the majors no doubt. Now that doesn't mean that we should trade Theriot b/c as everyone knows rookies go thru their slumps when they get called up. Right now we really don't have a MIF who can play both SS and 2B other than Ryan. So why trade him if we're trying to ease Castro in at some point? Sure Fontenot can play some SS but do any of you feel comfortable with him as our SS if Castro gets called up but isn't ready? Only way I say we trade Theriot is if it's in a package deal with some prospects that gets us an upgrade somewhere. Other than that it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to trade him away.

Doogolas
05-02-2010, 07:33 PM
Why would we "ease" Castro in?

Reese's
05-04-2010, 05:42 PM
Has history taught us nothing that rushing guys into things for us doesnt work?

hrubes20
05-04-2010, 05:58 PM
Has history taught us nothing that rushing guys into things for us doesnt work?

You also can't sit a 20 year old 4 days out of the week and expect his game to improve as much as it could if he was playing everyday. The kid should spend the year in the minors, working out the kinks in his game and preparing to take over the starting job in 2011. However, if he gets brought up, he will be our everyday starting SS, there is no question about that. He won't get the Colvin treatment.

Milnertime
05-04-2010, 06:48 PM
You also can't sit a 20 year old 4 days out of the week and expect his game to improve as much as it could if he was playing everyday. The kid should spend the year in the minors, working out the kinks in his game and preparing to take over the starting job in 2011. However, if he gets brought up, he will be our everyday starting SS, there is no question about that. He won't get the Colvin treatment.
Or at least he better not.

Reese's
05-05-2010, 03:38 PM
Nah I'm not saying he shouldnt sit for 4 days outta the week but to call him up have him start SS everyday AND more than likely ask him to bat leadoff for us when we're still trying to compete would be a horrible move for the kid.