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Cubs SS Starlin Castro evolving as hitter

Chicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro is showing promise for the future of the middle of the team's lineup.

David Banks - Getty Images

Starlin Castro currently leads the Chicago Cubs with a batting average of .283 and has put together the kind of season that brings hope and a promise that he will become a force in the middle of the team's batting order in the future, according to a report by Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com on Thursday.

Castro has posted career-highs in home runs with 14, RBI with 77, as well as 12 triples and 25 stolen bases.

"If you're .280 to .310, you're still going to be in the upper echelon of all of baseball," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said in Mooney's article. "He's swung the bat really, really well in the fifth hole with men in scoring position. I really see some really good at-bats (there)."

Though the Cubs have endured a 59-97 season to this point, Castro's ascendence brings optimism for Theo Epstein's plan to use the shortstop as a major factor in bringing Cubs baseball back to prominence after Castro agreed to a contract extension worth $76 million that will last through 2020.