Kyle Schwarber promoted to bat as DH in AL parks, observe catchers

CHICAGO -- Cubs 2014 No. 1 draft pick Kyle Schwarber will join the Cubs from Double-A Tennessee for the next six games, which include five contests in American League parks in which he can be the designated hitter.

"Kyle has had a tremendous developmental year so far behind the plate, with the bat and as a leader," president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said Monday evening. "His next stop is to continue his development as a catcher at Triple-A. First, however, he is going to join the major league team for six days to contribute as a designated hitter, as a bat off the bench and as a third catcher. He will also use the time in the big leagues to experience firsthand all that goes into being a major league catcher. Regardless of how this week goes, Kyle will head to Triple-A after Sunday's game."

Schwarber, who was 15th in ESPN MLB Insider Keith Law's most recent prospect rankings, joins fellow first-round picks Kris Bryant and Addison Russell on the team. Both made their major league debuts earlier this season.

Schwarber, 22, is hitting .318 with a .439 on-base percentage to go along with 13 home runs and 39 RBIs. He was the No.4 overall pick in last June's amateur draft after a three-year career at Indiana University. In 129 minor league games, Schwarber has a .333 batting average with 31 home runs.