Rumors are circling that the Chicago Cubs will be moving Starlin Castro to third base in the near future. The reason for this possible change is Cub’s standout prospect Javier Baez who is being touted as the future of the Cubs and is a shortstop. The Cubs would like to get Baez some big league time as soon as possible.
At first, I wasn’t wild about the idea because I think Castro is just coming into his own as a shortstop. Castro had 27 errors in 2012, but he continues to get better and reduce his errors each year. I think he has the potential to become a Gold Glove winner at short.
Does Castro have the athletic ability to move to third? I think he is young enough to make the move and develop into a quality player, but his ability is suited to covering a lot of ground at short, not the quick reaction time and short dives it takes to play third. A better option for the Cubs would be to move Baez to third, and give him time to develop there.
The Cubs continue to struggle finding someone to man the hot corner with any consistency. If they were to move Baez there this year, he could get time at his new position while getting quality plate appearances.
Will the Cubs make the right decisions? My guess is the Cubs leave Baez in the Minors for the next two to three years while keeping Castro at short. This will eventually lead to the Cubs having two shortstops and the need to teach one a new position during a time when they could be competitive.
The Cubs would be wise to look to the future when making their decisions for this year.
By Reid Lester