Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 6/7/12

If there was such a thing as an "official" end to the latest Starlin Castro controversy, it ended Wednesday when general manager Jed Hoyer backed field manager Dale Sveum's handling of the situation.

Sveum took a balanced approach to disciplining Castro for two mental gaffes in the previous series, at San Francisco. He admonished Castro, saying the second mistake was the "last straw." But he did not bench the 22-year-old star, instead throwing him back into the lineup and then watching as Castro played well.

Hoyer, who came on board last fall, said he and new team president Theo Epstein anticipated such a moment, given Castro's youth and history of judgment lapses on the field. Hoyer referred to former TV analyst and current Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine criticizing Castro last year for having his attention wander while on the field.

"That was something we talked about in the interview process," Hoyer said. "(Castro) had already had that Bobby Valentine moment. We were hoping he'd never have another incident, and he did. That's why you hire a manager. That's the manager's job. Dale did that on his own, and I think it was a perfect tone."

The Cubs also were busy a few days ago shooting down rumors that Castro was on the trading block. Although they've said no player is "untouchable," they've also said Castro is a key building block to the Cubs' future.

"As far as how he fits in our plans, he's a huge part of our plans," Hoyer said. "He's a shortstop who can hit, who can run and he's getting better defensively. Those are hard to find. You look around baseball and almost every time we play another team, we have the better shortstop on the field, and that's a great feeling to have."

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