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Report: Kyle Schwarber, hoping for World Series shot, to DH Monday in AFL

Mark J. Rebilas, USA Today Sports

If Kyle Schwarber is going to make the World Series roster for the Chicago Cubs, he’ll have one more chance to prove himself. Before he heads to Cleveland for the World Series, Schwarber will suit up for the Mesa Solar Sox in the Arizona Fall League on Monday.

“Schwarber, who missed nearly all of the 2016 season following a knee injury suffered when he collided with Dexter Fowler in the outfield on April 7, will serve as the designated hitter for the second time with the Mesa Solar Sox in the Arizona Fall League,” MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo said. “It’s believed he will be hitting in the No. 2 spot in Mesa’s lineup. He went 0-for-3 with a walk in his first live-game action on Saturday.”

Schwarber played in only two regular season games during the 2016 season before his injury. In 2015 with the Cubs, he bombed an impressive 16 home runs in only 232 at bats.

Even as the National League team, Chicago doesn’t lack for DH options from either side of the plate. Still, a healthy Schwarber may be the best option, especially against right-handed pitching.

The problem, of course, is that he hasn’t played for so long. Schwarber will have played in only two AFL games, which is hardly an adequate sample size. Schwarber will not only need to hit but may be needed to run the bases as well. Coming off of such a significant injury, how well will he do that?

If he does play, Schwarber can’t exactly be eased into action. Playing in the World Series, everyone needs to jump in with both feet.

Schwarber’s AFL game can be watched here. The World Series begins on Tuesday evening. Rosters are expected to be finalized in the morning.