Cubs All-Star shortstop Starlin Castro had nothing to do with a shooting in the Dominican Republic that reportedly left six people injured, and Castro was neither arrested nor detained, Castro's longtime agent Paul Kinzer said. "He wasn't arrested. That's just the [Dominican] media trying to get headlines," Kinzer told CBSSports.com by phone. "He answered questions, he wasn't involved and they know it."
This is the second incident that Castro's name has been peripherally attached to over the last month. I suggested in Saturday's post that someone close to Castro ought to sit down with him and advise him on how to avoid these types of situations. In the Jon Heyman CBS Sports report linked above, it appears Kinzer has done just that:
Kinzer suggested Castro's status as a wealthy celebrity makes him a target in his homeland, and that he needs to leave there. The agent said Cubs people are advising the same, though the team hasn't yet commented. "He's got to move. He's got to get out of there," Kinzer said. "It's a shame. That's his home. But he's got to get out."
It is indeed a shame for anyone to have to leave his hometown; unfortunately, that's the likely endgame of these situations for Castro. He's certainly got enough money to be able to bring his family to the United States or at least out of a place where there appears to be danger to his safety.
In this Spanish-language publication from the D.R., there's a statement attributed to Castro. I don't always like posting translations from Google Translate, as they don't always get the nuances of the language, but here's (approximately) what Castro said:
"This Christmas I've spent alone, preparing for sporting challenges that await me next year and I reiterate that everything that has been said regarding problems occurred where my name appears, no truth," says Castro. He understands that in one form or another he is a public person "so any news where I am noted I can have an impact, even if not true, as in this case." "The sad thing is that some use with unhealthy purposes and it is not the first time, which I condemn. I will concentrate on my training as a professional baseball player to have a good season in 2015, and honor the name of the Dominican Republic," he said in another paragraph of his explanatory letter.
I know we have several native Spanish speakers here and if any of you could provide a more accurate translation from that article, I'd appreciate it.
The bottom line is that Starlin Castro has to do what's best for his family and for his position as the Cubs' starting shortstop. It would appear to me that getting out of the Dominican Republic might be a very good idea for him and his family.