Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

starlin castro stare gloveAlthough errors are not the be-all, end-all of defensive analysis, they sure are a bad thing. To that end, a pretty easy – and correct – critique to hurl at Starlin Castro this year is that he’s made way too many errors on easy plays. After decreasing his error total for a third straight year in 2014 to just 15, Castro is now up to 12 this year already after booting an easy play on Monday night.

Castro seems to be at his worst in the field when he’s passive, waiting back on balls and not attacking. That’s why he can make so many impressive plays when passivity isn’t an option.

And, to his credit, Castro bounced back with a really nice night in the field yesterday, making a great play on Dee Gordon who can fly, and also making this great sliding stop and throw from his knees:

Castro flashes that kind of thing all the time. It’s just the other struggles that makes it easy to forget. Castro talks about his defensive issues here in the Tribune, as well as here at CSN.

While it’s not hard to imagine that the Cubs have big league ready players who could be better defensive shortstops than Castro, it’s very difficult to imagine Castro being moved off of shortstop in the middle of the season. Perhaps that’ll be re-evaluated – together with the roster composition by way of trade – in the offseason. For now, presuming health, Castro is going to stay at shortstop.

Hopefully, then, he keeps the attacking mentality, and cleans up the easy mistakes going forward. It is still very much within Castro to be an average or better defensive shortstop.

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