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Chicago Cubs manager Lou Piniella has never been a completely conventional guy (Carlos Zambrano to the bullpen?), but neither has he been a statistical renegade – eschewing stats in favor of his “gut,” as former Cubs manager Dusty Baker was wont to do. So when Lou put rookies Tyler Colvin and Starlin Castro together at the top of the order this weekend, it was fair to assume he was just trying a little something out, but would soon come to his senses.

I guess his gut got the best of him.

The Cubs’ continuing look toward the future could involve an extended look in the present at rookies Tyler Colvin and Starlin Castro batting first and second.

Manager Lou Piniella, who batted them back-to-back atop the lineup for the second straight game, said he wants to see how it works for a while and has considered flip-flopping them in the top spots.

As teammates in the minors, Castro batted ahead of Colvin, usually in the 2-spot, with Colvin batting third.

”That’s something we talked about, but we figured the 2-hole was better for Castro,” Piniella said. ”Colvin was a college player, more experienced. Castro hits behind the runner well. It doesn’t really matter, one or two. Let’s keep it this way for a while and see what happens.” CHICAGO SUN-TIMES.

To be sure, Colvin and Castro are doing many great things in their respective rookie seasons. But getting on base with any kind of regularity is not one of them.

Colvin, thanks to 20 pounds of added muscle, is driving the ball like he never has before. His .535 slugging percentage screams middle of the order run-producer. But his paltry .318 OBP screams it even louder. In no universe is that a guy you want leading off, and it defies logic to pretend otherwise.

As for Castro, he may someday be a great fit in the 2 or 3-hole, but at present, he’s probably a better fit in the 1-hole. He’s got a .345 OBP, and he runs the bases as well as anyone on the team. Putting him in a role where he’s regularly expected to give himself up, or perhaps run the bases behind someone else makes no sense.

  • Scarey

    Regardless of the reasoning, it gives the Cubs two best young players ont he 25 man roster the most plate appearances. I like it.

    • Ace

      Very fair point, Scarey. Though, it would be nice to allow them to learn the roles they be playing in the future (and at least in Colvin’s case, it’s nowhere near the top of the order).

  • marc

    agreed with scarey…. Its not like we have a realistic chance at the playoffs… i like it

  • marc

    wooo hoo! pinella to retire!!!!!!! yahooo

    • brian

      I just heard that but my question is who should replace him, I don’t know if Ryne is the best option or even ready, i doubt the Yankee’s will let Girardi go, Bob would be nice but is he willing (I think he enjoys the freedom of being able to go and watch his son play) and Torre would never come here. I just don’t know how much faith I have in landing a manager that fits with this team. I’d love to see Maddox as GM and Ryno as Manager but I doubt our higher paid players would listen to him. With that being said I really do NOT want to see Ricketts find some random Manager who has had minimal success in his career but recently had a few winning seasons.

  • marc

    i say we should go hard after joe girardi because he said himself he wanted to be here… Maddox at gm and Ryno would be ideal and as a lifelong cub fan… i think hell realize that… adios pinnella

  • KB

    Maddux as GM? I’d say no way, but Nolan Ryan has done a stellar job as the Rangers team president, so perhaps Greg could do that kind of job.

  • KB

    btw, of COURSE it’s idiotic to bat Colvin leadoff with his propensity to hack at everything in sight, and thus put up very poor OBP numbers.
    But I’m like Scarey on this one…we’re playing out the string anyway, why not let our kids rack up lots of PA’s?

  • Willis

    I like Castro up top, I like Colvin getting lots of at bats…maybe make him a 3 or 4 hitter though with his slugging…but I love the idea of Castro up top in the lineup.

    As far as mgr, I say it will be Brenley or Ryno…I would want Girardi over both of them, but I can’t see the yanks letting him go without a big fight, and a fight the cubs would get crushed in (both in terms of talent and $$).

    • Ace

      Don’t discount the desire to be “the guy” who finally wins with the Cubs. It’s alluring, particularly for guys who are young, and who’ve already won elsewhere.

  • http://bleachernation rgrchicubs16

    wow…and i see people are giving up on Aramis Ramirez…well hes my favorite Cub…got several autographs from him…and hes a great guy!! i said a couple of months ago he will get it going…i know the injury hes had..because i played college baseball as a backstop for all you people out there thats a catcher anyways i saw tonite that we didnt give up 10.5 games back aint shit…especially in our division! the cards are coming to town and we actually play them pretty well i still believe we can get back in the this… i would like to send Lou out with a bang! hope all my loyal cub fans feel the same way!! however my dismay to jim hendry is a different story…Ricketts should have fire his ass a long time ago when they took over the team i still feel that we should lock up ramirez and lee those are our corner stones…we need to overhaul our outfield and pitching!!

    • brian

      wait sorry but didn’t JH create those teams in ’07 and ’08, if you want to give the Manager credit for what happened shouldn’t Dusty get the credit if not JH? I”m a fan of niether but still I’m just saying

      • brian

        by the way i hate to play devils’s advocate but it just sounds to cool

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