Kyle Schwarber has turned into the hero at Wrigley. This is an important series for the Chicago Cubs. Pretty much whoever wins this series wins the right for a Wild Card spot in October. last night, the Chicago Cubs defeated the San Francisco Giants 5-4 in a nail biting series opener. Kyle Schwarber connected on a three run bomber in the second inning to help the Cubs surge past the Giants.
“He’s different,”Joe Maddon said. “I love the way he starts the bat. He really uses his hands well. It’s not an aluminum bat armsy swing, it’s a very much wooden bat handsy swing. It’s not going to go away. He’ll struggle at some point; of course he will. He thinks he can hit, he knows he can hit, and that’s a big part of his success.”
If this was the reason that the Cubs selected Schwarber first in the 2014 draft and it’s paying huge dividends down the stretch as every team is vying for that coveted chance to play in October.
Jason Hammel was taken out of the game in the sixth. Was it because of the double walks or perhaps Joe is trying to give the guys some rest going into crunch time?
“He had really good physical stuff from where I was sitting,” Maddon said. “I did not want to let them back into the game right there. I thought it was really important. It’s been my experience that when you get to the playoffs, there’s some really great work done in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings by relievers who don’t get any credit for it.”
It was the right thing to do despite Hammel wanting to stay in there.
“Every game’s important. The main goal is to be relevant after the All-Star break and we’re right there. We’re very happy taking the first one in a pretty important series. This is a tough ballgame, tough team. They’ve won three of the last five World Series. We have to make sure we win as many times as we can. They battled back from a big deficit today and we were able to pull it out. Kudos to us. We’re going to continue to grind.”