Mailbag: Castro would make room for Baez


This week's mailbag features Chicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro as he answers your questions:

Have you made any changes to your plate discipline this year after last year's struggles? -- Brad (Tinley Park, Ill.)

Castro: We're working on my mentality. Be positive in everything I do and don't let my mind take me out of the game. Just concentrate and I think I'll be better.

What is your favorite pitch count to hit? How much does the pitch count matter in hitting? -- Jim (San Antonio)

I like 2-0 because I think I'm going to get a fastball. It depends on the situation too. When you're ahead you know you're getting a strike. With no one on base I like 2-0.

What's it like playing at Wrigley Field compared to other stadiums? -- John (Justice, Ill.)

I love Wrigley field. Good fans, good people. You even like the smell. The next best place to play actually is in Arizona. The field is real nice there and you can see real well.

Which current or former Cubs teammate has had the most impact on your career? -- JB (Chicago)

Alfonso Soriano for sure. He's one of the greatest guys. He treated me like I was his son. He helped me a lot when I first came here.

How do you feel about Javier Baez? Do you see him as a great addition, or a threat to your job? -- Ponchito (San Francisco)

I don't even think about that. He's a great guy. I love him. We play the same position but when he comes here we'll have to do something, with me or him. I'm here to help the team. I don't care where they put me. You can hit, we'll find a position for you.

Starlin, you have been my favorite player from the day you began your career in a Cubs uniform. Has it been hard playing every day the last few years because of the rebuilding process and the losing that has come with that?

With the losing it's tough. It's tough, the games feel so much longer. They feel four hours, six hours. When you win, it doesn't matter how long it goes, it feel great.

Hey Starlin. First off, I'm a huge fan. Your defense has been excellent thus far, all the hard work paying off. Do you feel that you can still grow in to some more power and turn into a 20-homer/20-steal guy? -- Ryan (Alabama)

We're looking for that. We want to take it to the next level. I don't know but we're working hard for that. Hopefully that will come.

What is the best thing about living in Chicago? -- Alex (Chicago)

Downtown. I love it down there. That's where I live and go out.

Congratulations on the great start to the season! What is your favorite restaurant in Chicago to eat at? -- Sam (Mundelein, Ill.)

SC: I like Morton's. It's awesome. Love a good steak.

Who was your role model growing up?

I like Miguel Tejada. I always look up to him when I was young. I like [Derek] Jeter, too.

What has gone into your successful start to the season? Are there any adjustments that you've made, seeing the ball better, etc.?

Just try to be on time for every pitch. Don't be looking for a pitch, of course you're ready for the fastball every time. But try to be on time for curve or slider or change that are thrown strikes.