I’d be lying if I said I haven’t been a little disappointed in the way Kyle Schwarber has performed this year, especially after he missed all of last season only to come back and play great in the World Series. He hasn’t hit for average at all this season, his power has been okay, but not where I’d like to see it, and he was even sent down for a stretch to Triple-A Iowa.
Will all that being said, I feel it is my duty to inform you that Kyle Schwarber is officially back! After going 3-5 with a homer in Thursday’s brutal 13-10 loss, he is back to the good side of .200 with a batting average of .204. He is hitting .260 since returning to the Cubs from Iowa on July 6th, and in that time he has hit 7 bombs. Sure, he has also struck out 40 times in that stretch. The thing is, he was never going to be a low strike out guy. That’s not his game.
In his last 4 games, he is 6-10 and Schwarbs looks to be coming alive at the perfect time. This team desperately needs his bat in the lineup, and I’m not talking about the guy that was hitting .171 at the end of June. I’m talking about the guy hitting .260 since his return.
I have been on Team Schwarber all season, however, and his On Base and OPS show that he hasn’t been as bad as his batting average looks. Despite having just a .197 average heading into Thursday, his OPS was at .747. Is that great? No. But it’s also not terrible. Schwarber ranks 7th among qualified Cubs in OPS, beating out Albert Almora (.737), Addison Russell (.722), Jason Heyward (.697), and Ben Zobrist (.668).
In other words, Schwarber hasn’t been that bad. Sure, his average has been terrible, but his advanced statistics tell another story. He is still getting on base, and that is much more important than his batting average. For the rest of this season, I’d love to see him draw some more walks, lower his K rate, and hit about 10 more homers so I can yell SCHWARBER SMASH!!!!!
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Go Cubs Go!