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Chicago Cubs: Kyle Schwarber not cleared to play outfield

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Oct 26, 2016; Cleveland, OH, USA; Chicago Cubs player Kyle Schwarber (12) hits a RBI single against the Cleveland Indians in the third inning in game two of the 2016 World Series at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 26, 2016; Cleveland, OH, USA; Chicago Cubs player Kyle Schwarber (12) hits a RBI single against the Cleveland Indians in the third inning in game two of the 2016 World Series at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /
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The legend of Kyle Schwarber continues to grow, but unfortunately, he is not medically cleared to play in the outfield for the Chicago Cubs. This means he will be restricted to pinch-hitting at Wrigley.

After becoming the Chicago Cubs World Series hero in Game 2, questions arose as to whether Kyle Schwarber would be able to play in the outfield as the series moves to Wrigley. Unfortunately, according to Cubs GM Theo Epstein via Twitter, Schwarber’s doctors could not clear him to play the field.

Naturally, the Cubs want to keep Schwarber’s bat in the lineup, and with the series moving back to Wrigley Field for the next three games, the designated hitter in no longer an option. In the end, this decision is probably for the best. Schwarber’s ability to come back and bat is impressive enough.

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Don’t get me wrong, I love Kyle Schwarber, but here’s another thing to keep in mind. Schwarber wasn’t the best defensive outfielder when he was healthy. He wasn’t bad by any stretch, but definitely not considered to be a defensive asset.

So in the end, it’s probably best for both the team and Schwarber to hold off on this one. The series and Schwarber’s health are both too important to risk.

The legend of Kyle Schwarber

Kyle Schwarber’s comeback is impressive, not just because of what he’s done, but because we simply haven’t seen anything like it before. After tearing two ligaments in his left knee, some wondered if he would even be able to come back for the beginning of spring training. And now here he is helping his team in the World Series.

In his first two games serving as DH in the World Series, Schwarber has gone 3-for-7 with two RBI’s and two walks. Both of his RBI came in Game 2, delivering clutch singles to help pad the Cubs’ lead on the Cleveland Indians.

Schwarber is simply picking up where he left off last postseason. The young slugger now has at least one RBI in seven of his 11 postseason games. This from a player who many scouts declared was drafted far too soon. His career postseason OPS now sits at a staggering 1.274. If this is what Schwarber looks like when he’s rusty, then I can’t wait to see what he does when he shakes that rust off.

Next: Four Cubs nominated for Gold Gloves

The next Babe Ruth?

Is Kyle Schwarber actually the reincarnated version of Babe Ruth. Seems unlikely, but based on what I’ve seen, I simply can’t rule out that possibility. Schwarber is now second among Cubs players in postseason RBI totals with 10. The guy ahead of him is some scrub named Kris Bryant.

Just because he wasn’t cleared to play in the outfield doesn’t mean we won’t see him play. Odds are he’ll get a few pinch-hit opportunities in Chicago. Then you can send any one of Jason Heyward, Jorge Soler, Albert Almora or Chris Coghlan out to play the field. And if the series goes back to Cleveland (let’s hope it doesn’t!) he will absolutely DH again.

There truly is nothing like October baseball. Every year it seems like there is some incredible underlying story. This one takes the cake. Schwarber’s quick rehab and his incredible contributions to the World Series really is the stuff of legends. You’ll be telling your grandkids about this one.

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