7:55am: Rogers now tweets that the Cubs will place John Lackey on the 10-day DL due to plantar faciitis, though it’s possible that due to the off-time afforded by the All-Star break, Lackey won’t even miss a start. Lackey started yesterday’s game for the Cubs and wasn’t in line to make another appearance in the first half anyhow.
7:36am: The Cubs will recall Kyle Schwarber from Triple-A Iowa today after a brief demotion to the minors, reports ESPN Chicago’s Jesse Rogers. He’s expected to be available for today’s game against Milwaukee.
The 24-year-old Schwarber got off to a dreadful start in 2017, hitting just .171/.295/.378 through his first 261 plate appearances. While Schwarber did belt 12 homers in that time, he also struck out in nearly 29 percent of his plate appearances and hit 10 infield flies to go along with a lowly 12.3 percent line-drive rate.
Schwarber’s demotion was never expected to be especially lengthy in nature, however, and he’s clobbered Triple-A pitching in 11 games following the quick mental respite. In 44 plate appearances, the former No. 4 overall draft pick hit .343/.477/.714 with four homers and a double. He did strike out 12 times (27 percent), but he also drew eight walks.
Jon Jay has seen the bulk of the playing time in left field since Schwarber was sent down and has hit well (.268/.318/.463 in 44 PAs), but Schwarber figures to reclaim the majority of playing time in left upon his return. The corresponding move for Schwarber’s return isn’t yet known, but there are no obvious demotion candidates on the position-player side of the equation, and the Cubs are currently deploying an eight-man bullpen.