Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

kyle schwarber chicago cubs featureLike I mentioned earlier in the more comprehensive Kyle Schwarber take, his debut last night didn’t really feel much like a debut.

I’m thinking this is going to feel more like the debut:

  1. Dexter Fowler, CF
  2. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
  3. Kris Bryant, 3B
  4. Miguel Montero, C
  5. Starlin Castro, SS
  6. Chris Coghlan, LF
  7. Chris Denorfia, RF
  8. Kyle Schwarber, DH
  9. Addison Russell, 2B

I especially like putting Schwarber in the 8th spot, not only because it puts him in a position to relax and perhaps not feel too much pressure, but also because it isn’t disruptive of the rest of the lineup. We know the DH is temporary, and we also know that baseball players are creatures of habit.

The Cubs will face righty Shaun Marcum tonight – yup, he’s still pitching, and actually isn’t even that old, at 33 – who is having a so-so go of it this year. Although he’s striking guys out at the best clip of his career (23.1%), he’s also seen a bump in his walk rate (7.7%) and he’s giving up a lot of long balls.

For his career, lefties (.250/.319/.418) have fared better against Marcum than righties (.232/.288/.402), and that’s been especially true in a small sample this year.

Although Marcum is crafty, Schwarber is patient. I like this match-up for a “debut.”

Mostly, though, let’s just hope the Cubs’ offense gets going.

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