Jump to content





Bleacher Nation is on Facebook, and you should totally "Like" us:
 


Bleacher Nation is also on Twitter, and you should totally follow us:




Upcoming Calendar Events

There are no forthcoming calendar events

Today's birthdays


Photo

Move Starlin Castro to Second?


  • Please log in to reply
13 replies to this topic

#1 Baseballet

Baseballet

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 20 posts

Posted 17 April 2012 - 10:14 AM

I've been wondering if it would be a good idea to shift Starlin from shortstop to second base. As a shortstop, his range and arm strength are great, and he makes terrific catches running out into shallow left field, but he throws wild. It seems to me that his inaccurate throws are the main reason why he's been so bad on defense.
I've read speculation about shifting him to third, but that would only lengthen his throws. Shifting him to second would make for shorter throws. Wouldn't that go a long way towards solving The Error Problem?
I know Starlin is young and is working hard to improve, but I'm not sure throwing accuracy is an area that can be drastically improved with major league experience. It seems to me that that's more of an innate ability. (I assume he's been making throws to first base since he was 9 years old). I'd guess that Starlin might be able to make a slight improvement in this regard, but not enough to become a great defender.
The Error Problem kept Starlin from being an elite player last year, despite his hitting barrage. A shift to second might make him a legitimate two way star player and perennial All Star.

#2 King Jeff

King Jeff

    King of all Cubs fans!

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,475 posts
  • Twitter:@peaceknuckle
  • LocationSouth Florida

Posted 17 April 2012 - 10:53 AM

I think this depends on who would play shortstop. I was pretty against Castro moving, but there are a bunch of pretty good shortstop prospects in the system that could make it happen. I for one, would love to see an infield of Baez, Castro, Lake/Vitters, and Rizzo in a few years.

Baez has me really excited from what I've been reading of him. From what I can tell, he's played 4 extended spring training games, he's 9 for 15 with 3 HRs, 3 triples, and 2 doubles, and I think one of the homeruns was off of Paul Maholm, which might not mean so much from a major leaguer, but from a kid less than a year out of high school, it's pretty encouraging. He's also made a couple of pretty good plays in the field and stolen a few bases.

#3 Crockett

Crockett

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 243 posts

Posted 17 April 2012 - 11:35 AM

I am all for Castro moving to 2B. If Hendry hadn't broken the bank for Garza, our SS-in-waiting would be Lee. But now we really don't have a great defensive SS option in the minors. Baez is likely to move to 3B and Lake won't be a major league player imo (plus he can't play SS long term...he's huge!).

Frickin' Hendry.

#4 Spencer

Spencer

    Bleacher Hero

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,560 posts
  • LocationValparaiso, IN

Posted 17 April 2012 - 11:46 AM

Starlin will (hopefully) be able to improve enough defensively to handle SS. He's just really, really young. I think the bigger hole in the infield is 2B, and we have decent depth there at the minors.

#5 King Jeff

King Jeff

    King of all Cubs fans!

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,475 posts
  • Twitter:@peaceknuckle
  • LocationSouth Florida

Posted 17 April 2012 - 11:47 AM

I am all for Castro moving to 2B. If Hendry hadn't broken the bank for Garza, our SS-in-waiting would be Lee. But now we really don't have a great defensive SS option in the minors. Baez is likely to move to 3B and Lake won't be a major league player imo (plus he can't play SS long term...he's huge!).

Frickin' Hendry.

Check out how Lee has been doing since moving up to double A last year(it's not very good). Lee would still be a far way from pushing Castro if he was still with the Cubs. I think that this is going to go down as one of Hendry's better deals, even if Lee makes good on his promise.

#6 Luke

Luke

    Bleacher Hero

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,082 posts
  • Twitter:@ltblaize
  • LocationMaryland

Posted 17 April 2012 - 11:52 AM

Marco Hernandez is probably the best defensive shortstop in the system right now, but he is a few years away. Elliot Soto is closer and is playing very well in Tennessee. Lake and Baez are likely to move off of short. I wouldn't count out Wes Darvill, even though I tend to think he'll stick at second or third.

But I don't think Castro has to move. He does make some bad throws, but his manager (who is a former major league shortstop, I might add) has been working with him on those throws and doesn't seem worried about Castro's long term ability to stick at the position. Other major league shortstops are extremely positive on Castro's defense. The experts are of the opinion that, given his age, he's right on or ahead of schedule defensively for a shortstop prospect.

#7 Crockett

Crockett

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 243 posts

Posted 17 April 2012 - 02:03 PM


I am all for Castro moving to 2B. If Hendry hadn't broken the bank for Garza, our SS-in-waiting would be Lee. But now we really don't have a great defensive SS option in the minors. Baez is likely to move to 3B and Lake won't be a major league player imo (plus he can't play SS long term...he's huge!).

Frickin' Hendry.

Check out how Lee has been doing since moving up to double A last year(it's not very good). Lee would still be a far way from pushing Castro if he was still with the Cubs. I think that this is going to go down as one of Hendry's better deals, even if Lee makes good on his promise.


Small sample size. Lee is still an elite 4.5 tool prospect. He's just below Profar and Machado.

#8 Baseballet

Baseballet

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 20 posts

Posted 17 April 2012 - 02:10 PM

"But I don't think Castro has to move. He does make some bad throws, but his manager (who is a former major league shortstop, I might add) has been working with him on those throws and doesn't seem worried about Castro's long term ability to stick at the position. Other major league shortstops are extremely positive on Castro's defense. The experts are of the opinion that, given his age, he's right on or ahead of schedule defensively for a shortstop prospect."

I agree that he's young and has been working on his defense, but I'm not convinced that hard work will cure him of his problem with making inaccurate throws. I hope that some technical adjustments and more practice can solve this, but it seems to me that inaccurate throwers tend to remain inaccurate.
As for being right on or ahead of schedule defensively, he led all MLB players in errors last season and leads all MLB players in errors this season (tied with four others). If that's ahead of schedule then I'm glad he's not behind schedule.

#9 Luke

Luke

    Bleacher Hero

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,082 posts
  • Twitter:@ltblaize
  • LocationMaryland

Posted 17 April 2012 - 02:52 PM

As for being right on or ahead of schedule defensively, he led all MLB players in errors last season and leads all MLB players in errors this season (tied with four others). If that's ahead of schedule then I'm glad he's not behind schedule.


Most shortstops his age and with his amount of experience are in the minors. If you want to compare apples to apples, compare Castro's error numbers to those of the minor league shortstops his own age. He is right on or ahead of schedule defensively for a shortstop prospect.

#10 hansman1982

hansman1982

    King Regent of The Calendar Trivia Empire

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,936 posts
  • Twitter:JoeHansman
  • LocationDes Moines, IA

Posted 17 April 2012 - 03:21 PM

If I remember reading correctly, Castro started playing organized baseball around the age of 16, if my memory is correct that means he has all of 6 years of experience or about as much as most Freshman baseball players.

Even if this isn't correct, he is only 22, and after hearing the dissection of his defense during the 2 throwing error game the other day it seems highly correctable (hammering down the fundamentals)

#11 Edgar

Edgar

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 149 posts
  • LocationChicago

Posted 17 April 2012 - 03:48 PM

I wonder if any teams bring former defensive stars to help kids with those kinds of problems. I would bring Omar vizquel? To teach our infielders once he retires. I haven't heard of things like that but it could happen. Why doesnt mlb have position coaches like nfl? I know there's outfield and infield coaches

#12 DocPeterWimsey

DocPeterWimsey

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 145 posts

Posted 17 April 2012 - 06:01 PM

Again, the outs are more important than the errors. Castro is going to create more outs than Derek Jeter did for the Yanks, NY Media propaganda notwithstanding. Jeter still was (and still is) key to the Yankees making postseason annually because he provides so much more offense than most of the other guys that other AL teams have at SS.

Now, Jeter was not a great SS: but playing him there let the Yanks play good hitting secondbasemen such as Knoblach, Soriano and Cano, none of whom are whizes defensively (and all of whom would have been worse at SS) instead of having to acquire a rarer good-hitting SS.

The same will be true now. It's going to be easier for the Cubs to find a solid OPS 2nd-baseman than a solid OPS SS.
Gods don't play dice with the universe, they are the dice of the universe: our job is to figure out how many sides and dice!

#13 Drew

Drew

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 129 posts
  • Twitter:@Drew7
  • LocationUrbana, IL

Posted 17 April 2012 - 07:41 PM

I tend to agree with Hansman- hes so young its hard seeing him not improving.

Also, as mentioned above, errors are almost a useless stat; Castro's range is well above average and also something that will probably improve with experience.

All that said, his defense isnt what's holding him back from elite; what he beings to the table offensively is much more important to me. As his power developes and he hits more XBH's you will see him move into "elite" status.

#14 Blitzenjohn

Blitzenjohn

    I'm New

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 1 posts
  • Twitter:@blitzenjohn
  • Facebook:John R Olney
  • LocationLansing, MI.

Posted 18 April 2012 - 02:34 PM

I can't see any reason now to move Castro to another position. His D will improve over time, and with Rizzo, Lake, and Baez upcoming, our infield should be the envy of MLB. I did not add Vitters to this as he's destined to be a DH, and a good one at that. And, isn't time for Clevenger to take over full time C duties?




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

Bleacher Nation is not affiliated in any way with Major League Baseball or the Chicago National League Ballclub (that's the Cubs).