Despite rapidly approaching the 1,000-hit mark at just 25, Chicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro continues to draw fire from fans of his team and others around the league.
Chicago Cubs fans irritate me –a lot.
Perhaps nothing irritates me more than when fans take pot shots at Starlin Castro, who, at least offensively, is one of the best in the league at his position.
Entering play Monday, Castro has 923 base hits; and he doesn’t turn 26 until next March. He boasts a career .282 average, despite some sub-par seasons.
Last year, the youngster put together a career-best year, tying a career-high with 14 home runs while driving in 65 runs and smacking 33 doubles. He did all of this despite missing 28 games with a high-ankle injury that derailed his final month of the season.
Recently, Call to the Pen pondered this very question and weighed in on why Castro draws the ire of fans so regularly.
"Starlin Castro has made 14 errors this year. That is good for second in the league at short stop. For a guy that was once (laughably) called the next Derek Jeter, it might be safe to say that it is not exactly working out. Now 25 years old, Castro’s first-two years’ numbers are proving to be a fluke, as he has not hit .300 since those years."
Entering this season, the Chicago Cubs infielder had racked up more hits than any other shortstop in Major League Baseball.
Sure, his defense isn’t winning the team any ballgames (a point that is pounded into the ground by pundits regularly), but at a -0.1 dWAR this season and a -0.2 dWAR last year, it’s not like it’s costing Chicago multiple wins each year.
Since he broke onto the scene, Starlin Castro has been lumped into a pish-posh mix of misfit toys trying to keep things afloat while the organization went through a top-to-bottom rebuild.
However, with the Chicago Cubs emerging from the half-decade makeover, now is the time for fans to start appreciating Castro.