Cal Ripken Jr. can go ahead and pop some bubbly.
As noted by MLB.com’s Carrie Muskat, Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro is not in the starting lineup for Tuesday night’s game against the Brewers. It is the first time he’s been absent from Chicago’s order in the last 269 games, which was the longest active consecutive starts streak in the National League.
Castro is batting .228/.264/.318 with three home runs and 24 RBI in 326 plate appearances this season for the Cubs. He hit .283/.323/.430 with 14 homers in 2012 and .307/.341/.432 with 10 homers in 2011.
Tigers first baseman Prince Fielder is baseball’s active “Iron Man” with 416 straight starts.
The Astros have released first baseman Jon Singleton, Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports.
Singleton, 26, was suspended for 100 games after testing positive for a drug of abuse for a third time. He has had issues with marijuana in the post and admitted to being a drug addict several years ago. He said, “At this point it’s pretty evident to me that I’m a drug addict. I don’t openly tell everyone that, but it’s pretty apparent to myself. I know that I enjoy smoking weed, I enjoy being high and I can’t block that out of my mind that I enjoy that. So I have to work against that.”
Singleton played parts of two seasons in the majors in 2014-15 with the Astros, batting a combined .171/.290/.331 with 14 home runs and 50 RBI in — appropriately — 420 plate appearances. He spent 2016 with Triple-A Fresno and 2017 with Double-A Corpus Christi, putting up middling numbers.
If he can convince teams he’s still actively working to overcome his addiction, Singleton may be able to find an opportunity elsewhere. But his road back to the majors remains long. He was once a top prospect in the Phillies’ system, then was traded to the Astros in the Hunter Pence deal back in July 2011.