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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Cubs Injury Update: Starlin Castro, Anthony Rizzo possibly done for season

By on 9/03/2014 04:00:00 PM

UPDATE: Starlin Castro could miss the rest of the season.
The Chicago Cubs have called up and started playing a number of their hottest prospects. The young guys are playing very well, and the Cubs will need that trend to continue. Shortstop Starlin Castro and first baseman Anthony Rizzo are two the team's leaders on and off the field, but the Cubs will play without both of them for possibly the remainder of the season..

Starlin Castro's Carrie Muskat tweeted Tuesday evening that Castro could miss the remainder of the season.
Muskat quoted Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer Tuesday evening describing the possibility. Said Hoyer,
"We're operating under the assumption that he's out for the year. We're not going to shut him down. He's going to work hard to come back. His mentality is he can beat four weeks and come back. If nothing else, it will send him into the offseason healthy."

ORIGINAL: Castro exited Tuesday night's game in the first inning after sliding awkwardly into home on Jorge Soler 's RBI single. He caught his left-foot spikes in the dirt, turning an ankle. After a full minute, he limped off the field under his own power.'s Carrie Muskat reports that Castro had both X-rays and an MRI performed on his left ankle Tuesday morning. The test results showed a sprain, and he will have further evaluation on Wednesday. The good news is that he has no fracture in the bones.

Wednesday's Cubs Injury Report lists Castro as day-to-day, but with a sprain, it could take some significant time for him to return to the lineup considering the season's final date of September 28. Javier Baez will likely play shortstop with Logan Watkins at second base until Castro returns.

Castro is hitting .292 with 14 HR and 65 RBI in 134 games this season.

Anthony Rizzo
Muskat also noted Tuesday night that Rizzo had an MRI on his lower back, which revealed a mild strain. Muskat said that if not for the roster expansion, the Cubs would disable him. The Injury Report lists Rizzo as out indefinitely, which means he could miss the rest of the season. As our own Kerry Kauffman discussed Tuesday night, Chris Valaika has played first base in Rizzo's absence and will likely continue to do so.

With the Cubs well out of the postseason race, shutting down Rizzo is not a bad idea. He has had a tremendous year, and he is the cornerstone of the Cubs' rebuilding plan. Team president Theo Epstein discussed the possibility of shutting Rizzo down for the year. Muskat carried the statement Tuesday night. Said Epstein,
"We're going to be cautious with him. It's the type of thing where if it was before expanded rosters, he'd be put on the [disabled list]. With the expanded rosters in September, there's no need to DL him. It's nothing chronic, nothing that will bother him long term, but something we don't want to rush back from."
If Rizzo cannot return, then he finishes 2014 at .278 with 30 HR and 71 RBI in 129 games.

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