With the Cubs recent offensive struggles, and the hot start top prospect Starlin Castro has gotten off to in the Minors. Bruce Levine is reporting that Starlin Castro will be called up in the near future, as General Manager Jim Hendry, and Assistant GM Randy Bush are currently developing a plan for how Castro would be used when he gets in the majors. In addition, Bush is following the Tennessee Smokies watching Castro, and making sure he is ready for the transition.
As currently constructed, the plan would be to start Castro in 5 or 6 games a week, and move starting shortstop Ryan Theriot over to secondbase, where in all honesty he is a better defender. If that is indeed what happens, that would increase the Cubs middle infield defense. As, Castro has been considered to be a very good defensive shortstop, and Ryan Theriot also would make for a better secondbasemen instead of shortstop.
However, when the Cubs call up Castro, they would be forced to move Jeff Baker, Mike Fontenot, or Chad Tracy. Fontenot, who is off to strong start with a line of .308/.339/.346 probably is in no danger of losing a spot on the team. Baker, who is struggling so far in this early season by hitting .214/.267.429 is out of options, which means the Cubs may not want to option him, as they don’t want to risk losing him. Which brings up Chad Tracy, who is doing the worst of the three by hitting .143/.200/.214 maybe the logical choice to be moved. As, Xavier Nady would then become the primary backup at firstbase.
Now ever since spring training started, I’ve been for the Cubs bringing Starlin Castro up to the majors. Now, I know he is only 20 years old,but I really think he is ready. After watching him in Spring Training, and following him down in Tennessee, I’ve seen enough to tell me that he is ready to produce in the major leagues. Through reading scouting reports and listening to Baseball writers, it seems that if called, Castro could instantly become one of the best defensive shortstops in the game, as well as continuing to hit like he has done in the minors. Many people expect Castro to be a .300 hitter with the potential to hit 15-20 home runs, but as for this year I would say anywhere from .270-.285 would be a logical projection for him. In 19 games this season, Castro is hitting .370/.416/.593 with 12 extra base hits including one homer, and 4 steals.
As for as a possible timeline, Bruce did not really give one his report except for to say “soon”. But, in a radio appearance with the Afternoon Saloon on ESPN radio, Bruce said anywhere between the next week and month.