Cubs move Castro from No. 3 lineup spot

May, 25, 2012
5/25/12
3:50
PM CT
Padilla By Doug Padilla
ESPNChicago.com
Archive
Starved for run production, the Chicago Cubs will operate with a new look to the lineup Friday at Pittsburgh as Starlin Castro was moved out of the No. 3 hole for the first time this season.

The club’s current leader in batting average (.313), RBIs (25) and hits (56), was never considered the ideal hitter for a spot typically reserved for run producers, but Castro got it seemingly by default out of spring training as the club’s best hitter.

He was moved to the No. 2 spot against the Pirates, a lineup position he found himself in for 42 games last season. In fact, Castro was in the No. 2 spot exactly the same number of games he was in the No. 3 spot in 2011 and batted .335 with 18 RBIs as a No. 2 hitter and .225 with 13 RBIs as a No. 3 hitter.

Not big on walks to begin with, Castro has just four free passes this season, possibly the bi-product of trying to change his game and be more aggressive in a run-producing role as a No. 3 hitter. His .323 on-base percentage is under his .341 mark from last season and his .347 number from 2010.

With Castro in the second spot, the previous tenant of the No. 2 hole, Tony Campana, was out of the lineup altogether. Joe Mather was batting third Friday and playing in center field.

Mather has just 54 at-bats, less than a third of what at-bat leader Castro has, but the only regular with a better slugging percentage than his .519 mark is the .612 number from Bryan LaHair. Castro had a .413 slugging percentage.

The entire Cubs lineup Friday against Pirates right-hander A.J. Burnett:

1. David DeJesus, RF
2. Castro, SS
3. Mather, CF
4. LaHair, 1B
5. Alfonso Soriano, LF
6. Adrian Cardenas, 3B
7. Darwin Barney, 2B
8. Koyie Hill, C
9. Ryan Dempster, P

Doug Padilla

Chicago White Sox beat reporter
Doug joined ESPN Chicago in July 2010 and covers the Chicago White Sox for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?

TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Jake Arrieta
WINS ERA SO IP
9 2.65 157 149
OTHER LEADERS
BAS. Castro .292
HRA. Rizzo 31
RBIA. Rizzo 74
RA. Rizzo 86
OPSA. Rizzo .895
ERAT. Wood 4.86
SOJ. Arrieta 157