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Repairing the ridiculous mess up the middle...
Posted 14 October 2011 - 07:42 PM
2) Sign Jimmy Rollins if you want to shore up defense while you develop Javier Baez in the minors. Hopefully Baez can stick to SS with his frame but it'll be up to Cubs management on this one. I like a stop-gap like Rollins (4 yr deal with a club option on the 4th). Nice to dream a little dream.
3) Move Byrd to right field and bring Brett Jackson up to start at CF from the get go. Out of all the top 5 OF prospects only Harper and Jackson have yet to sniff the majors. We all now that both are going to be there in 2012. Scouting Jackson, Strengths: Well-rounded, athletic. Good bat speed. Solid plate discipline. Speed (4.15). Arm strength. Attitude...I say welcome to the bigs Kid. Having Byrd in RF, Jackson in CF and platooning LF seems the most logical if you want to improve the defense up the middle.
4) Barney at 2B, Rollins at SS, Jackson at CF seems to be a decent triangle of defense if you're serious about contending in a few years. Reyes is going to ask for too much and he wasn't that much better with the glove than Castro. Winning championships starts with defense and pitching. I'm tired of the errors...right the ship on this one.
Open to comments here...get the ball rolling.
Posted 15 October 2011 - 07:49 AM
Given Castro is just 22, I might be inclined to give him one more year at SS to see if he can improve. I think most would agree that more focus and experience at the position would reduce errors.
Posted 15 October 2011 - 08:36 AM
Posted 15 October 2011 - 01:11 PM
Castro to 3B is probably in the cards eventually, but I think we need to give him another year or two to try and improve at short. His bat at short = perennial All-Star. His bat at third = average or slightly above average regular.
Byrd to RF for the short term is fine, but his bat there is extremely weak.
Posted 15 October 2011 - 09:09 PM
Castro would be a downgrade (powerwise) at 3B but he'll eventually have to get moved once he adds a few lbs. He's got the A-rod build. A-ram is gone and with him his useless stats (see Brenley). There are ZERO replacements on the FA market and in house Vitters is starting to come around BUT his glove is horrible. Stick him in RF and call it good. After a half season in Iowa maybe he gets his ticket punched. I was strickly talking about defense here so....
Jackson, Rollins, Barney and Soto. Thinking in terms of defense. Castro would have had about 10 more errors if it weren't for Pena at 1st...oh boy. Just trying to think about how the 2012 Cubs will look.
Posted 16 October 2011 - 09:06 AM
Rollins is good defensively but is going to be 33 in April next year and will command a multi-year deal. Doesn't make much sense to pay long term for a guy who is not setaling bases at same clip as he used to, losing his power, and defensive range is becoming more limited. If we were going to be contenders and this was the missing piece it might be a good move but Cubs have many holes and I'd rather see how Castro can develop at SS.
Posted 16 October 2011 - 05:42 PM
But...we are NOT going gang busters just yet of free agents anyway. Give the kid at least one more year and see what happens. Unless we sign the best 5 available free agents (dear God let's hope we don't) we are not going to compete in 2012 anyway.
Posted 17 October 2011 - 12:13 PM
Posted 17 October 2011 - 12:20 PM
Posted 17 October 2011 - 03:59 PM
Castro's primary issue isn't his ability to field. He has tremendous range and isn't afraid of getting dirty (or afraid of a cleat in his thigh). His issue is his throwing, he has to settle down and avoid rushing his throw or forcing throws. It's really a matter of concentration and focus- meaning he needs good coaching.
They need to do the same thing to Castro as they did to Dorn in the first major League movie. Put him at his position and hit hard ground balls over and over until he gets it. Starlin is a good shortstop, he just needs to come up with the ball more than he does...... (Sometimes I think Casto Makes his move towards 1st base before the ball reaches him)
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