Cautious Cubs holding back Castro

Cautious Cubs holding back Castro

MESA, Ariz. -- Starlin Castro hopes to begin running and hitting off a batting tee Tuesday and said he could be back in Cactus League games by the weekend. However, Cubs manager Rick Renteria was a little more cautious, predicting the shortstop would return next week.

Castro has been sidelined with a mild right hamstring strain suffered March 2.

"It [stinks] to be doing this," Castro said Monday of the rehab. "I'd rather be playing. We'll see this weekend if I'll be in the game."

It's the second straight spring that Castro has missed time because of a hamstring injury. Last year, it was his left hamstring, and the strain was more severe. He's already thinking about what he has to do next offseason.

"I'll just work a little more to get stronger," Castro said.

The plan is to begin baseball activities Tuesday and start taking ground balls Wednesday. Although Castro was eager to be playing by the weekend, Renteria said they'll be careful.

"We want him ready for April," Renteria said.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.