Cubs Rumors: “A lot” of teams are circling around Kyle Schwarber

(Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
(Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /

This winter’s free agent class certainly doesn’t lack impact bats – with a star-studded crop of shortstops leading the way. Whether or not the Chicago Cubs bring in one of those big-name bats remains to be seen but, for now, we’re going to be keeping tabs on all of them – at least until we see how the offseason shakes out.

Chicago’s top priority – and rightfully so – will be pitching. The Cubs’ starting rotation was abysmal last year and even the club’s longstanding steadying presence, Kyle Hendricks, will head into 2022 with a lot of question marks surrounding him. Jed Hoyer pulled off an early surprise, adding Wade Miley off waivers, but there’s still plenty of work to be done.

But that doesn’t mean the Cubs will sit on the sidelines when it comes to bats. One potential fit could be former outfielder and first-round pick Kyle Schwarber who, just one year ago, was non-tendered by the team after a brutal showing in 2020. Of course, the designated hitter coming to the National League via the new CBA would only improve the fit – but either way, Chicago needs some more power in the mix.

If Hoyer wants to explore a reunion with Schwarber, though, he’s facing an uphill battle. According to Robert Murray of FanSidedthere are ‘a lot’ of teams eyeing the slugger – including his most recent club, the Boston Red Sox. He points out that Schwarber really is one of the premier offensive talents on the market this year:

  • Schwarber has more 30+ home run seasons than fellow free agents Nick Castellanos, Michael Conforto and Carlos Correa combined.
  • Schwarber has four seasons with an 800+ OPS. Semien has two.
  • Schwarber, Conforto comparison: Home runs since 2018: Schwarber 107, Conforto 84; career OPS: Schwarber .836, Conforto .824.

According to Murray, Boston will attempt to re-sign Schwarber this winter. Given his limitations defensively, American League teams certainly look like a better fit. But, like I said, if the playing field is leveled on that front in the new collective bargaining agreement, Senior Circuit teams like the Cubs might have a fighting chance at signing him.

Chicago Cubs still need a power presence in their new-look offense

I personally think the odds of Chicago bringing back any of their former core players remains slim. But Schwarber, coming off a monster second half with Boston and an overall strong year, could be the exception to the rule and be a perfect piece in an offense that’s trying to generate more contact and rely on the long ball less moving forward.

Don’t get me wrong. Schwarber can drive the ball out of the yard with the best of them. But he also isn’t going out there putting up Joey Gallo-like strikeout numbers, either. After going from Washington to Boston via trade this summer, he got on base at a staggering .435 clip – showcasing his ability to work counts, as well as hit for power.

Next. Another day, another Corey Seager to the Cubs rumor. dark

Given his relative age and skillset, Schwarber could be a perfect presence in the Cubs’ order once again come next season. But, as is the case with any high-end free agent, it’ll take Chicago flexing their financial muscle to get it done.