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When it comes to prospects, the Chicago Cubs have not always shown an appropriately level of restraint in promoting them to the bigs, only to have them sit on the bench. So, it is with some trepidation that we’ve watched shortstop Starlin Castro rocket through the system.

But good news: manager Lou Piniella says he sees Castro as a starter, not a backup. In fact, if anything happens to Ryan Theriot, Piniella says he’s ready to give the job to Castro full-time.

Piniella would have no problem going to phenom Starlin Castro if anything were to happen to shortstop Ryan Theriot.

“I mentioned that if Theriot were to get hurt, which we don’t want, obviously, you just put the kid at shortstop at let him play,” Piniella said of Castro. “That’s in case of an injury to Theriot. We don’t want to see that. We want Theriot to play.

“If the kid shows he can handle it and we had an injury at the position, why not? I want to see him in the spring. He played very well last summer, and he had a really good winter ball, and he’s a good-looking young guy. If he’s ready and somebody gets hurt, why not utilize hit talent? That’s all I’m saying. He wouldn’t be here as a backup at all.” Daily Herald.

Good-looking young guy, eh, Lou? Grrrrr. That’s my cougar growl.

Despite Lou’s comment, Castro could have an effect on the Cubs bench, but probably not until he’s ready to be a full-time starter. When Castro is ready, Theriot will slide to second, which will probably make one of Mike Fontenot and Jeff Baker obsolete.

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