The MLB and MLBPA finally came to an agreement on starting the 2020 season. Part of the return to play agreement involved the addition of adding the designated hitter to the National League. The Chicago Cubs have a few options for who to run at DH. But who is the Cubs’ best DH option?
The obvious choice is the man who always seems to be linked to AL teams in trade rumors. Left fielder Kyle Schwarber. Many believe Schwarber is best fit to be a DH opposed to an outfielder. He has a career .979 fielding percentage and lacks speed, but what he does not lack is the power behind his swing. To this point in his career, he is averaging one home run per 15 at-bats and his batting numbers keep growing by the year. Schwarber may be the Cubs’ best DH option, but he is not the only option.
Fixing the Log Jams
The Cubs have a couple of positional log jams entering the 2020 season. The DH spot could be the perfect way to solve the Cubs problem.
The most up in air position battle comes from centerfield, where Albert Almora and Ian Happ will be battling for the starting position. With the addition of the DH, the Cubs could manage to keep Almora’s glove and Happ’s bat in the lineup by making Happ the DH. Happ holds a career .246 average and has shown short flashes of power potential early in his career. But also, if Schwarber is the DH, there is no reason Happ should not be the everyday left-fielder.
Another logjam they have that could be intriguing is at the hot corner. With the future of Kris Bryant unknown, it may be in the Cubs’ best interest to give David Bote more looks at third base. Kris Bryant is in desperate need of a bounceback season, and with him focusing less on the field and more on the plate, this could be a perfect opportunity to focus on his plate struggles.
The New Guys
The Cubs made two off-season moves that could result in the team’s new DH.
First would be signing the veteran second baseman, Jason Kipnis. Through eight seasons, Kipnis has made 37 starts in the DH spot. He has a .261 career batting average and .333 on-base percentage. Although, he is not your typical DH he is an option.
The other addition and better option would be outfielder Steven Souza Jr. Coming off a scary knee injury, it should be in the team and Souza’s best interest to limit his running. Slotting him in at DH would be his best option. He may not be the best threat to get on base or go deep. But he is a better option than a pitcher.
The Cubs Best DH Option
Judging by the options, it is slim picking for the Cubs. But the obvious choice is Kyle Schwarber, he brings power and vision to the line-up and gives the Cubs the option to run with Ian Happ and Albert Almora Jr. manning the outfield. But on the other hand, if the Cubs decided to run with Kris Bryant, it could pay off in the future. It would not be in the Cubs’ worst interest to split the DH between Schwarber and Bryant. Either would be the Cubs’ best DH option.
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