Kyle Schwarber’s time in D.C. will mostly be remembered for the otherwordly run he went on in mid-to-late June, when the 28-year-old slugger, who signed a 1-year/$10M deal with Washington’s Nationals last winter, hit 16 home runs in 18 games, going 24 for 69 in a silly-good stretch at the plate (.348/.403/1.043) which ended when he suffered a hamstring strain and he ended up on the Injured List.
In spite of the fact that Schwarber was still on the IL at the trade deadline, GM Mike Rizzo managed to trade him to the Boston Red Sox in return for a 20-year-old pitcher, Aldo Ramirez.
Scwharber returned to action in mid-August and went 39 for 104 (.291/.435/.522) with 10 doubles and seven home runs in 41 games and 168 plate appearances down the stretch, with 33 walks and 39 Ks over the last month and a half of the regular season.
Now he’s back in the postseason with the Sox, who take on the New York Yankees tonight in Fenway Park in the AL Wild Card Game.
Scwharber told reporters he was excited to play in the one-and-done, winner-take-all matchup.
“Yeah, I mean, it’s a very exciting game in general,” Schwarber said.
“I think it’s great for baseball. It’s a game that it says it all in its word, wild card, anything can happen. It’s very exciting, and obviously with the Yankees, too, with the history with the Red Sox/Yankees, it’s going to be a dogfight, and it’s going to be all hands on deck, and you’re just trying to find a way to win it any way possible.”
It’s going to be Schwarber’s sixth postseason appearance in seven big league seasons, and the one-time Chicago Cub and National for a minute said he knows that’s not the norm.
“It’s great,” he said. “I was spoiled when I was in Chicago, making five out of six, playing two Wild Card games, being able to win a World Series. You know, I love the playoffs. This is something that I want to keep doing every year. I want to be known as a player that is — when you go out there and win and help the team reach the playoffs and reach the ultimate goal of a World Series, but obviously it’s a step at a time.
“To be here in this position, you have to make the playoffs any way possible. Look at the 2019 Washington Nationals, they make the Wild Card and go all the way to win the World Series. Obviously division is the No. 1 goal, but just to make the playoffs in general, it’s always a good thing.”
Will the Red Sox move on or will the Yankees live to play another day? It all starts at 8:08 PM ET tonight...