Now THAT's a First Inning: Schwarber Leadoff Homer, Almora Grand Slam (VIDEOS)

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Now THAT’s a First Inning: Schwarber Leadoff Homer, Almora Grand Slam (VIDEOS)

Chicago Cubs

If the Cubs pull this off on Opening Night, that would be fine with me.

(Of course, it remains to be seen whether Albert Almora Jr. will get the nod in the opener, when the Cubs will face Carlos Martinez, who is especially tough on righties. But then, the way Almora has been swinging the bat this spring, it’s almost hard to sit him at all right now.)

Atypical but totally-awesome leadoff man Kyle Schwarber did his thing to kick off today’s game against the A’s. No, he did not bunt, he crushed a bomb (via Cubs Insider’s YouTube page):

“A homer is all well and good, Kyle, but just make sure you’re getting on base for the guys behind you,” he said extremely sarcastically.

That wasn’t the only dinger in the first inning for the Cubs, as Albert Almora Jr. came to the plate with the bases loaded, and showed off some more of that power he’s been wearing this spring:

Thanks to Cubs Insider for their on-the-spot videos this spring!

Almora will enter into the season in a platoon with Jon Jay in center field, but no one will deny that a best case scenario has him winning the job outright. Jay is a fantastic outfielder to have on the roster, as he bats lefty and can play all over the outfield, but his upside as a regular is limited. With Almora, whose glove is already Gold Glove-caliber, you’ve got the potential for a 4+ win player if the bat is even average.

If he keeps ripping it like he has been, Almora could be the everyday center fielder by mid-April.

Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.