On the list of needs for the Red Sox leading up to the Major League Baseball trade deadline were a powerful left-handed bat and help at first base.
Kyle Schwarber undoubtedly checks off one of those boxes, and it remains to be seen if he can check off the other.
Boston acquired Schwarber in one of the three deals swung by Chaim Bloom and Co. prior to Friday’s deadline. The 2021 All-Star is an outfielder by trade, but as Bloom revealed shortly after the deadline passed, the Red Sox will give their newest position player a look at first.
“In a perfect world, we would’ve been able to get someone with Kyle’s impact who also has a lot of first base experience. He doesn’t. We are going to take a look at him over there. He’s excited to do it,” Bloom told reporters, as seen on NESN. “This is someone I would not bet against to really do anything that he sets his mind to on a baseball field. This is a guy who blew out his knee and hit .400 in the World Series in the same year. So, I wouldn’t bet against him.
“But even if that doesn’t come to pass, we think the impact with the bat is huge and there’s going to be a lot of ways for him to help us. It’s going to allow us to feature much stronger lineups, especially against right-handed pitching. It’s going to allow us to take care of our guys down the stretch, give more days off when needed to some of the guys we’ve been leaning on. It’s going to deepen our bench when he’s in there and when he’s not. If we get where we’re trying to go, it’s a weapon we can really, really leverage in very important games at the end. We’re excited to see what working with him at first base is going to bring, but we really like the impact even without that.”
Schwarber also has catching experience at the professional level, but Bloom does not anticipate the seventh-year pro seeing time behind the plate for Boston. That said, Bloom believes Schwarber would be up to the task if asked.
The Red Sox will have to wait some time before they see Schwarber on the field at any position. The 28-year-old still is nursing a hamstring injury he suffered at the beginning of the month.