Chicago Cubs: Defense is the name of the game
It becomes incredibly frustrating when outside sources talk about how bad Kyle Schwarber is defensively, and how it hurts the Cubs. The reason being is that it is merely not true. Yes, Schwarber was fair to Midland on defense last season. He was also returning from his ACL tear and was not the Adonis he became during this past offseason.
The narrative, needless to say, has shifted. This season, Schwarber has shown much greater mobility and range, and it has transferred into a very defensively productive season.
Last year, for example, in 821 innings in the outfield, Schwarber finished with -9 defensive runs saved. He made five errors and did not look like he should be out there on a day-to-day basis. This season, Schwarber has been remarkable. He has a 3 DRS, a positive change of twelve runs from last season, and both his UZR and UZR/150, which is the best way to measure outfield efficiency, has increased from 4.3 and 8.8 to 7.1 and 12.1, respectively.
No, Kyle Schwarber will not win a Gold Glove this season, but it is a far cry from saying his defense is terrible, which many have done. By producing with the leather, on top of the wood, Schwarber is flipping the script.