Fan Views – Starlin Castro: The Enigma

Here at Born on Third we like to hear what you the fan thinks, because after all we are all fans, and we want to know what’s going on in your head regarding the Cubs.  Have a comment, want to vent about the Cubs?  Then send us an email at and we will feature it on the blog.  Our first entry comes from Stanley Croussett, a die-hard Cubs fan from Philadelphia, PA.  Give him a follow on twitter for more Cubs chatter, and please do not hesitate to send us your thoughts!

Chance has it that if you’ve even remotely watched the Chicago Cubs in the past three years, you’ve seen the Cubs start a young short stop by the name of Starlin Castro. From the get-go Castro became a star, driving in 6 in his debut versus the Reds on May 7th, 2010.  The Cubs SS kept that momentum and went on to finish his rookie season with a line of .300/.347/.408.
How could the then-21 year old improve on that season? As a Cub fan, regression was easily the most expected thing to expect from Castro – Considering that 2008 Rookie of the Year Geovany Soto’s sophomore slump was fresh in everyone’s minds. But did Castro fall under the same spell? Absolutely not! The Monte Cristi, DR native actually improved his numbers in his sophomore season (.307/.341/.432) and even became the youngest player to lead the National League in hits (207) ever!
And moving onto today, we’ve all heard the praise from Len Kasper and Bob Brenly about Starlin being a .300 hitter, not a .299 hitter; the ceiling statements from scouts saying he’ll compete for a batting title some day; and the comparisons from big league authorities everywhere.
But now the question arises: Why is Starlin hitting .279 this deep into the season?
Hold the trains! Starlin Castro is not regressing! The 2012 season has been a learning experience to Castro. Sure he isn’t hitting .300, but that is because he’s been laying off many more pitches.
Starlin’s been called a great bad-pitch hitter, and we’ve certainly seen it when he takes that pitch in the LH batter’s box and bloops it to Right Field for a single. Sadly, though, that pitch has produced many more strikeouts than it has hits. For quite a while now, Starlin’s been laying off that pitch and many others like it. Yes, he hasn’t been getting the hits on the good pitches yet but that is all part of the learning curve of the adjustment.
So should we worry about Starlin’s reduced batting average? Absolutely not. Should the rest of the National League worry that he’s close to adjusting? Absolutely yes!
Thanks again Stan, and thanks for reading,
– George