MLB commissioner announces Universal DH amid ongoing lockout
After Major League Baseball’s commissioner Rob Manfred addressed the media on Thursday for the first time in months, two phrases trended on Twitter that should interest Philadelphia Phillies fans:
“Schwarber” and “Universal DH.”
That’s right, the Designated Hitter position is returning to the National League in 2022, as Manfred officially announced. The ongoing negotiations between the league and players’ union have been slow, contentious, and largely unyielding, but it seems they’ve found common ground on this matter.
This news both helps and hurts the Phillies, as they were reportedly close to a deal with free-agent slugger Kyle Schwarber before the lockout began, and will likely circle back to him whenever it ends.
Will the Phillies sign Kyle Schwarber after the lockout?
Schwarber is coming off an incredible offensive season, and the Phillies need to add another big bat to their lineup; it feels like a natural, albeit expensive fit. Of course, they were always going to have competition for Schwarber, and now that the Universal DH is back, that competition expands significantly. Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox fans would love to see their former star return, and Cincinnati Reds fans are campaigning for the Middletown, Ohio native to be their new DH.
Former Bears linebacker Lance Briggs is one of many lobbying for his return to Chicago:
The upside of this DH news is that if the Phillies sign Schwarber, they have more ways to use him – he also plays left field and first base – which makes him a more productive addition. The downside is that the same can be said for several other teams. So, in a funny way, it changes everything and nothing at the same time. Aren’t work stoppages fun?