If the Cubs plan to use Class AA slugger Kyle Schwarber as an extra bat during a stretch of upcoming games with a designated hitter, it was still in the discussion stages Monday night.
Player development boss Jason McLeod said during a conference call about Monday night’s first-round draft pick that he hadn’t been involved in anything but draft talks over the past week.
Schwarber, the catcher who has been tearing up Southern League pitching all season, was in the Tennessee lineup as the designated hitter each of the last three days despite no physical issues that would suggest the move.
It was a first for Schwarber, the No. 4 overall pick in last year’s draft.
Monday night’s game was postponed by rain, and he left the park without being called to join the Cubs in Detroit Tuesday, a source said.
McLeod would say only that he knew the subject was being discussed in the media and that Schwarber continues to improve defensively (the area he must improve most to have a chance to make it and stick in the majors).
Cubs manager Joe Maddon had said in recent days that Schwarber could be an option for adding a bat temporarily, during a 13-game stretch starting Tuesday in Detroit that includes nine games against American League teams – seven with the DH.
BAEZ UPDATE: McLeod said it could have been worse, but that the broken finger Class AAA infielder Javy Baez suffered in Sunday’s game appears to be in “a best case” a six-week injury. “I’m guessing if we go conservatively, we’re looking at eight weeks,” McLeod said.
Baez suffered a non-displaced fracture in his left ring finger sliding head first on a steal of second base Sunday. He already had missed the first month of the season on family leave after the death of his younger sister.
He was hitting .314 with eight homers in 37 games – including a light-tower shot Saturday in Memphis.