Ryan Theriot, Arbitration, Starlin Castro, Benny Hill and Curling?
Rob G. from The Cub Reporter had a GREAT post on the arbitration process with the Cubs and Ryan Theriot. It includes a brief synopsis of arbitration, a comparison (to Stephen Drew), UZR, other stats, and Benny Hill theme music (all is right in the world).
All of this arbitration talk made me think of something though; this could be Theriot's last season as the Cubs' starting shortstop. The reason being is that we have Starlin Castro waiting in the wing.
Marc Hulet from Fangraphs had this to say about Castro:
"Just 19, Castro was pushed from rookie ball to high-A ball and he still hit .302/.340/.391 in 358 at-bats...Castro’s walk rate of just 5.0% was worrisome, but it improved to 8.3% upon a promotion to double-A (111 at-bats). Despite the late-season jump, the shortstop actually showed improvements in his game against better pitching...he also kept his strikeout rate low at 10.8% while hitting .288...successful in all six of his stolen base attempts in double-A. Defensively, he has the skill set to remain at shortstop...He’ll likely return to double-A to begin the season, but he’ll probably be the Cubs’ starting shortstop before his 21st birthday."
What I gather from this arbitration process and the talented Castro paying his dues in the minors is that Theriot doesn't fit into the Cubs' long term plans at shortstop. If the Cubs are smart, they give Castro a hard look this spring and maybe call him up at some point during the season. Then, hopefully, next year's middle infield would be Castro and Theriot.
In other news: I noticed something about the Olympics and it is this: Curling sneaks up on you. I've caught myself watching and enjoying it these past couple days. Sure, it looks ridiculous- but admit it, you've given it a thought or two of becoming a curler just to say you're an Olympian.
Chase that dream.