Cubs lineup: Castro back in 2-hole

April, 3, 2014
4/03/14
11:13
AM CT
Rogers By Jesse Rogers
ESPNChicago.com
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PITTSBURGH -- Chicago Cubs manager Rick Renteria wants shortstop Starlin Castro to relax at the plate so after two games batting third, Castro is back in a more familiar position of hitting second.

"It's not because he's not on pitches," Renteria said before the series finale between the Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday. "I think it's his anxiousness more than anything because he's taking some pretty good hacks on some really good fastballs."

Castro missed most of spring training with a hamstring strain but Renteria isn't using that as an excuse. Castro is 0 for 9 in two games and made a critical error on Wednesday night allowing a run to score. He also swung at an off-speed pitch on a 3-0 count with runners on second and third in the 11th inning of a tie game.

"I think it would have been a strike if he had taken it but on a 3-0 count you're not usually looking for a breaking ball," Renteria said. "I think he's been a little more anxious in the 3-hole."

Here's the rest of the lineup against lefty Wandy Rodriguez on Thursday:

1. Emilio Bonifacio, CF
2. Castro, SS
3. Justin Ruggiano, RF
4. Anthony Rizz, 1B
5. Junior Lake, LF
6. Mike Olt, 3B
7. Darwin Barney, 2B
8. John Baker, C
9. Jason Hammel, P

Jose Veras and Wesley Wright aren't available for today's game after their heavy workload on Wednesday night.

Jesse Rogers | email

Chicago Cubs beat reporter
Jesse joined ESPN Chicago in September 2009 and covers the Chicago Cubs for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Starlin Castro
BA HR RBI R
.292 14 65 58
OTHER LEADERS
HRA. Rizzo 32
RBIA. Rizzo 78
RA. Rizzo 89
OPSA. Rizzo .913
WJ. Arrieta 10
ERAT. Wood 5.03
SOJ. Arrieta 167