6/20 Extra bases
* One year ago, Starlin Castro was batting .302, and headed to his second All-Star Game. The Cubs shortstop entered Thursday’s game batting .235 for the season.
“By his numbers alone, he’s regressed, there’s no question about it,” Dale Sveum said Thursday. “You’re getting way, way down as far as all the other shortstops in baseball as far as the offensive part. He’s under .600 OPS. That would go without saying that he’s regressed.”
Castro has played every game, and Sveum said he hasn’t given the shortstop a breather yet because he hasn’t found a good day. Castro has done well defensively. If he did sit, Cody Ransom would sub at shortstop.
Part of the problem has been Castro’s mechanics at the plate.
“He knows the formula,” Sveum said. “The rest is up to him. He knows the issues and the mechanical things that are different than when he first got up to the big leagues. It’s up to him to get all of that ironed out.”
* Third baseman Ian Stewart will rejoin Triple-A Iowa this weekend. Stewart’s 10-day suspension ends Saturday, and he will join the Cubs’ Minor League team when it begins a four-game series at Memphis. Stewart, 28, was suspended by the Cubs after venting his frustrations about his situation and Cubs manager Dale Sveum on Twitter on June 10.
* The Cubs have eight relievers, and could make a roster move this weekend to add a position player. They’ve been carrying an extra pitcher since outfielder David DeJesus went on the disabled list last Saturday. One option would be to activated catcher/infielder Steve Clevenger, who was rehabbing at Triple-A Iowa and was on the 60-day disabled list. Clevenger’s rehab time ends Saturday.
– Carrie Muskat