ST. LOUIS – While the Cubs reignite their rivalry with the St. Louis Cardinals, Kyle Schwarber is preparing for surgery this week and what will be a long, difficult rehab process after tearing the ACL and LCL in his left knee.
Manager Joe Maddon declined to get into specifics before Monday’s game at Busch Stadium, putting up a privacy shield for the popular player responsible for “The Schwarber Ball” that landed on top of a Wrigley Field video board last October, helping the Cubs eliminate the Cardinals from the playoffs.
“Part of the concern is just getting too much information out there,” Maddon said, “and having a great response going in his direction that might inundate his phone when we don’t want to do that.
“It’s all to protect him. There’s no devious kind of plot behind this whole thing. It’s just we’re going to leave this guy alone and get his surgery done.”
Schwarber set a franchise record with five homers in nine postseason games last year. What would have been his second full season in professional baseball ended in the second inning of Game 3 when he crashed into Dexter Fowler trying to make a catch in the left-center field gap.
A best-case scenario for the Cubs would probably be having Schwarber all systems go in 2017 when pitchers and catchers report to Arizona for spring training.