Kyle Schwarber is expected to hit at the Major League level. The question with Schwarber is where will he play in the big leagues? Most outside of the Cubs’ organization think Schwarber will end up in the outfield.
Jaron Madison, the Cubs’ farm director, is in Des Moines watching the I-Cubs and told Tommy Birch, “We’re more certain than ever that he’s going to stay behind the plate long term.”
The Cubs have stated publicly the organization is committed to Schwarber being a catcher right now and Madison reiterated the front office’s stance on Schwarber to the Des Moines Register.
As for a promotion to Iowa this season, Madison would not rule that out for Schwarber. The Cubs will take a look at where he is at mid-season, offensively and defensively, before deciding where he will play after the All-Star break.
Andrew Green posted the stat lines for Kyle Schwarber and Kris Bryant through 38 games at Double-A Tennessee.
Kris Bryant was 46-for-142 with nine doubles, no triples, 11 home runs, 20 walks and 46 strikeouts for a .324/.425/.620 slash line with a 1.045 OPS.
Kyle Schwarber this season is 37-for-121 with six doubles, one triple, 10 home runs, 31 walks and 33 strikeouts for a .306/.442/.620 slash line with a 1.061 OPS.
As Jake Arrieta said after Saturday night’s comeback victory over the Diamondbacks, Anthony Rizzo put the Cubs on his back and carried his team to a win.
Rizzo tied a career high with six RBI that he set on Sept. 16, 2012 in a 13-9 victory over the Pirates. Saturday night also ended a stretch for Rizzo that saw him hit a lot of solo and two run homers. The last three-run homer Rizzo hit before Saturday, according to Christopher Kamka, was the Sept. 16, 2012 game against the Pirates.
Anthony Rizzo is batting .322/.444/.586 with 11 doubles, a triple, nine home runs, nine stolen bases, 23 walks, 21 strikeouts and a 1.030 OPS this season.
RHP Pierce Johnson has been on the disabled list with a back injury. Johnson strained a lat muscle in Spring Training and the Cubs have not tried to rush him back.
Jaron Madison addressed Johnson’s status with the Des Moines Register. Johnson is still in extended Spring Training. The Cubs hope to have Pierce Johnson back with Double-A Tennessee by early June.
Javier Baez collected three hits, a walk and a strikeout in Iowa’s 13-7 win over Tacoma. And Baez played shortstop.
After 22 games with the I-Cubs, Baez is batting .313/.394/.470 with four doubles, three home runs, 24 strikeouts, eight walks and a .863 OPS.
Dallas Beeler had his best outing of the season Saturday in the 13-7 victory over Tacoma.
Beeler went six innings and allowed one run on five hits. Beeler issued two free passes and struck out six on 94 pitches, 61 for strikes.
In six starts for Iowa this year, Dallas Beeler is 1-3 with a 8.06 ERA and a 1.95 WHIP … 27 runs, 23 earned, on 33 hits with 17 walks and 21 strikeouts in 25 2/3 innings.
The Smokies placed OF Bijan Rademacher on the disabled list Saturday retroactive to May 21. Rademacher and Albert Almora Jr. were involved in a scary collision last week. Rademacher and Almora left the game on their own power.
Albert Almora Jr. has not played since the collision but he has not been placed on the DL.
RHP Anthony Varvaro is done for the season. Varvaro will have season-ending surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon in his right arm. New York Mets’ surgeon, Dr. David Altchek will perform the operation.
Varvaro is expected to miss six months.
According to a report from Cormac Gordon, Varvaro thought he might need another Tommy John surgery and said the flexor tendon surgery was the best possible outcome.
Anthony Varvaro was designated for assignment by the Cubs and accepted his assignment to Triple-A Iowa earlier this month. Varvaro never reported to Iowa, instead he went to Chicago to undergo tests. An MRI performed by the Cubs revealed the “significant tear.”
The Cubs claimed him off waivers from the Red Sox and it was unclear which team would be responsible for his 2015 salary of $576,000 as well as the cost for the surgical procedure and rehab.
Varvaro went to Boston last Friday and it was determined after further testing the Red Sox will accept the financial commitment moving forward.
Anthony Varvaro was returned to the Boston Red Sox and is no longer part of the Cubs’ organization. Varvaro will eventually be placed on the Red Sox 60-day DL. Varvaro will rehab in Boston’s organization.
Jaron Madison told Tommy Birch that RHP Blake Parker re-signed with the Cubs on a minor league contract.
Parker was on the disabled list with an arm injury with the Cubs designated him for assignment and released him.
Blake Parker is currently rehabbing the arm injury at the Cubs’ facility in Mesa.
News, Notes and Rumors
• The Tribune reported, the Cubs’ bullpen looks for help from their closest friends.
• Dexter Fowler was 1-for-4 with a walk and a run scored Saturday night … and in the process extended his on-base streak to 15 games.
• Kris Bryant was officially 1-for-4 with a RBI, a HBP, two runs scored and a stolen base Saturday night. Bryant should have a hit added to his total on the grounder in the ninth that Yasmany Tomas knocked down and was charged an error. Bryant has a 12 game hitting streak, the longest for a Cubs’ third baseman since Aramis Ramirez hit in 16 straight back in August 2011.
• RHP Corey Black was activated from the DL. Black gave up one hit over five shutout innings to Montgomery. Black struck out five while no walking a batter on Saturday night.
• RHP Jake Stinnett was activated from the DL on Saturday. Stinnett allowed one run on four hits with a walk and three strikeouts in three innings.
• RHP Yoervis Medina made his second appearance for the I-Cubs. Jonathan Mota misplayed a ball into a double while Medina was on the hill. Medina left the game after recording only two outs. Medina was charged with two runs on four hits without a walk and two strikeouts. Medina served up a two-run homer in his short outing.
The Pelicans infield turned in a Web Gem … just watch.
• OF Matt Szczur left Saturday’s game early after being hit by a pitch. According to Tommy Birch, Szczur went to the hospital to get X-rays on his hand. Iowa’s manager, Marty Pevey did not have any details after the game.
• Despite inconsistency, the Cubs still believe in Starlin Castro according to the Tribune.
And last, but not least, the price for LHP Cole Hamels is going to increase with the way he has pitched. Hamels tossed another gem on Saturday. Hamels limited the Nationals to one run on five hits in eight innings. Hamels walked one and struck out five in route to his fourth straight win. Hamels is 4-1 in his last five starts with a 2.98 ERA and 1.08 WHIP. Hamels has given up 30 hits with eight walks and 35 strikeouts over his last 35 1/3 innings.
This Day In Cubstory
2001 – Jon Lieber one-hit the Reds on 79 pitches in a 3-0 Cubs victory. The Reds were shutout for the first time in 208 games and set a National League record. The 1931-33 Yankees (308) and the 1978-79 Brewers (212) are the only teams with longer streaks between shutouts.
1995 – Cubs signed free agent Felix Jose
1978 – Cubs moved into first place with a 6-4, come from behind win over the Phillies. Dave Radar tied the game with a two-run triple in the eighth and Manny Trillo hit a two-run homer in the tenth to win the game.
1969 – Ernie Banks hit the 12th and final grand slam of his career off Jack Baldschun. The Cubs topped the Padres 7-5 in San Diego
1969 – For the first time since the beginning of the season, a span of forty-one games, Don Kessinger did not reach base. Kessinger went 0-for-5 in the Cubs 7-5 win in San Diego.
1967 – Cubs released Dick Bertell
1964 – Cubs outfielder Lou Brock stole home for the first time, combining with Billy Williams on a double steal in the first inning of the first game of a doubleheader in Cincinnati.
1963 – Catcher Dick Bertell collected five hits but the Cubs lost 6-5 to the Houston Colt 45s (Astros) in 13 innings at Wrigley Field
1954 – Phil Cavarretta signed with the White Sox
1878 – Jack Pfiester was born on this date. Pfiester was called ‘Jack the Giant Killer’ and pitched for the Cubs from 1906-1911.