Cubs to sign Schwarber replicant former Dodger Joc Pederson, pending physical.

Kyle Schwarber was allowed to leave the Cubs via free agency, and now the Cubs will replace him with a guy so statistically similar in virtually every way, it’s eerie.

Look at the stats:

Here is Schwarber from




Here is Pederson:

Even without looking at this morning when I saw the tweet about the signing, I thought, “Hey, Schwarber and Pederson are the same guy!”  After looking, I asked myself if anyone in the history of baseball has been more similar to Joc Pederson that Kyle Schwarber.  The answer, as you see in the graphic to the left is a loud NO!

It was fun for a while when the Cubs threatened to command a chair at Major League Baseball’s table for grown-ups.  They briefly became one of the franchises that made sensible moves, drafted to a strategy, and built success that appeared sustainable.

This offseason, it’s clear winning is no longer the priority.  The Ricketts Family has finally decided to pursue the economic model that the Tribune Company and Phil Wrigley before them endorsed – fill the stands and your pockets without investing in the product.

Go ahead, try to keep 33,000 people from coming to Wrigley Field and watching on television!  There is no level of baseball bad enough to stop boneheads like me from making a pilgrimage twice each year to revisit the place my dad used to take me.  As teens, my friend Nick Anson and I used to hop the train from Lake Bluff to go to games.  In my 20s, I spent a couple hundred afternoons with my son – or  friends Paulie Balst and Len Totlan.  I loved every minute and enjoy that same feeling now.  That place is a touchstone for me, and millions more.

Because Wrigley Field is still Wrigley Field despite cash-grab upgrades like the video boards, millions of fans flock to Clark & Addison for a main course of memories and a side dish of baseball.

Hence the meaningless swap of Pederson for Schwarber.  Maybe Pederson will be slightly cheaper, but I doubt it.  This is a deck chair on the Titanic swap.  The NL Central might be so putrid, the Cubs can contend without a legit top of the rotation starter, fourth or fifth starter, second baseman, and backup outfielders.

In the end, it doesn’t matter.  We’re Cubs fans.  We buy tickets anyway.

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