Cleat Geeks

Kyle Schwarber’s Cub career may be Over

After what Kyle Schwarber did last week, I didn’t want to see him go down to Triple-A.  To come up and put up those numbers in a short amount of time is what a number one draft pick is supposed to do.

     Kyle Schwarber was called up to play designated hitter for interleague play.  In his twenty-two plate appearances, Schwarber put up a .364 batting average with a home run and six runs batted in.  What else could you have asked for? Kyle also showed his ability to drive the ball to the opposite field.  While his patience may have been a bit off, 8 strikeouts in 22 at-bats, he sure showed what the Cubs can expect from him when he returns to the ball club.  Or was Kyle Schwarber coming up to be a showcase for other major league ball clubs?

The Cubs have put forth a 37-30 record so far this season.  At this point last year, the Chicago Cubs were 31-42.  We all knew that they were in rebuilding mode but a huge improvement has taken place.  While the division is still competitive, it will be hard to catch the Cardinals in the NL Central.  The Cubs will be looking at the Wild Card spot and look to end the long World Series drought they have managed to put upon themselves.Alfonso Soriano

Or do we blame a black cat?

From Jesse Rodgers at ESPN Chicago addressing Kyle Scwarber playing catcher or outfield:

The Cubs could change their minds tomorrow and that would be OK as well. They might say, “Let him butcher left field but he’ll make up for it at the plate.” Hmm sounds familiar….does Alfonso Soriano ring a bell?

 

We all see that Kyle Schwarber is a threat at the plate, but is he a threat behind the plate? He is trying to learn the hardest position in baseball and not everyone is on his side.

keithlawKeith Law of ESPN.com speaks highly of Schwarber but he has his doubts. Keith even recently responded to someone on twitter about Schwarber. They asked, Can Kyle Schwarber stick at catcher in the pros? And Keith Law’s response back was; I would bet against it.

The New York Mets have put out the word for a year now that “We want Starlin Castro.”   Castro has been a floater on the trade block ever since the talk of Javier Baez and Addison Russell came about.  Baez has talent, but his .196 AVG didn’t show that last year.  Addison Russell has been a threat at the plate and amazing defensively and looks to be the long term answer at 2B.

Castro trade value has been plummeting a bit from his defensive struggles and inconsistency at the plate.  If a team needs a SS or a 2B now, Baez is the answer, but he has a broken index finger and will be out 4-8 weeks.  So who could be an option for the Cubs to be buyers at the deadline, Kyle Schwarber.

The reports that Schwarber is the Cubs long term catcher have somewhat dissipated.  Theo Epstein gave Miguel Montero a 4 year deal.  Is Kyle going to play catcher in Triple-A until that expires?  Unlikely.  The Cubs don’t need any more outfield help considering they have Junior Lake, Albert Almora, Arismendy Alcantara, and Billy McKinney.  There are also talks about playing Kris Bryant in LF and leaving room for the new and improved Javier Baez at 3B.

Theo also drafted two big time outfielders in the draft, Ian Happ and Donnie Dewees.  That brings the list up to six legitimate outfielders in the farm system….wow.

The excitement around Kyle Schwarber this past week was phenomenal.  Cub fans are entertained night in and night out with the talented prospects Theo has drafted and traded for.  Twitter was blowing up about how Schwarber cannot go down; Theo needs to keep him in the majors.  Well, Theo didn’t break the plan and he went down to Iowa as planned.

From the evidence given, it looks like Kyle Schwarber may have been a trade piece all along.  Montero isn’t here for just one year, he is here for four.  The Cubs drafted two more big time OF in this year’s draft putting away the talks of him playing outfield.  Schwarber has the ability to help any ball club weather they want him as a catcher next year, or if some AL team wants him as their DH.  Schwarber is trying to improve at the hardest position in baseball and Theo may not see him improving at the speed he wants.cole-hamels1

The Cubs still have interest in Cole Hammels

and the apparent Phillies rebuilding, Schwarber could be their future catcher.  If the Cubs were ever looking for an extra guy, Ben Zobrist is on the block and why not use Schwarber there?

In my eyes, we may have seen Kyle Schwarber’s only stint with the Cubs.  Schwarber came up and did his job well.  Somewhere, Theo Epstein may be doing the cha-cha in excitement for Schwarber has now proved what he can do and now other teams may consider asking for him.  You never want to see a power hitter like Schwarber leave your organization but not everyone has what it takes to stay.

 

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