3/31 Extra bases
* Starlin Castro may have only played three Cactus League games, but that was enough to convince Cubs manager Rick Renteria to insert the shortstop into the No. 3 spot in the Opening Day lineup.
“Wherever he puts me, I’ll try to do my job,” said Castro, who missed time because of a right hamstring strain suffered March 2.
Renteria wanted speed at the top of the lineup and went with Emilio Bonifacio and Junior Lake ahead of Castro, who also could lead off in games.
“I think I have some flexibility with the guys,” Renteria said.
* Justin Ruggiano did not start Monday against the Pirates’ Francisco Liriano because of a tender left ankle.
“He had a sore ankle at end of spring and we’re just trying to make sure we give him one more day and then we have a day off [Tuesday] and he’ll be ready to go the following day,” Renteria said.
* Top prospects Kris Bryant and Jorge Soler will open the season at Double-A Tennessee. Soler, however, will be slowed because of a sore hamstring. Arodys Vizcaino, who is rehabbing from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, was assigned to Class A Daytona to take advantage of the warm weather. Vizcaino will be on a structured program for the first month.
– Carrie Muskat