Red Sox: Kyle Schwarber tweets support for Cincinnati Bengals
The former Boston Red Sox star is apparently a Bengals fan
Kyle Schwarber quickly endeared himself to Red Sox Nation during his brief tenure with the club. Contrary to popular belief, Kyle isn’t actually from Waltham though. He’s from Middleton, Ohio, which is located just under 40 miles away from Cincinnati. It should come as no surprise then that Schwarber is a Bengals fan.
Schwarber showed his support for the Bengals during Sunday’s AFC Championship game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Cincinnati trailed 21-3 late in the second quarter only to rally with an incredible comeback.
The Bengals actually took a lead midway through the fourth quarter. Patrick Mahomes led a potential game-winning drive all the way down to Cincinnati’s four yard line in the final minutes but the Bengals defense came through with consecutive sacks to force the Chiefs to settle for a game-tying field goal.
Kansas City won the coin toss to receive the first possession in overtime but they weren’t able to move the ball as Mahomes threw a pair of incompletions followed by a crippling interception that set the Bengals up near midfield. A couple of quick passes from Joe Burrow and the powerful running of Joe Mixon moved the Bengals within range for the game-winning field goal.
Cincinnati is Super Bowl-bound for the first time in 33 years. In case anyone needed proof of the dramatic upset victory, Schwarber was there to provide it.
It’s not quite as historic as the New England Patriots rallying from down 28-3 in the Super Bowl against the Atlanta Falcons but the Bengals erasing an 18-point deficit did tie an AFC title game record for the largest comeback.
It wasn’t looking good for the Bengals in the first half, but as Schwarber reminded us, that’s why teams have to play though all four…. wait, five quarters.
The Bengals will move on to face the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LVI on February 13. It will be Cincinnati’s third trip to the Super Bowl in franchise history and their first since 1989.
You can bet that Schwarber will be watching his team during the big game. Something needs to keep him occupied while Major League Baseball remains on pause.
Once the lockout is lifted, Schwarber can turn his attention back to free agency. He’s ready to cash in following an All-Star campaign in which he hit .266 with a .928 OPS and 32 home runs.
The Red Sox acquired Schwarber from the Washington Nationals at the trade deadline. While he was far from a perfect fit on the field, Schwarber’s bat gave the lineup a boost down the stretch. He hit .291/.435/.522 with seven home runs in 41 games with the Red Sox.
Boston remains interested in bringing Schwarber back but they also have their eye on alternative outfield options, including Japanese star Seiya Suzuki. A desire to balance the lineup with a right-handed bat might have the club leaning toward Suzuki, plus the Gold Glove award-winner would provide a significant upgrade defensively.
The Red Sox toyed with the idea of transitioning Schwarber to first base when they acquired him but the plan never panned out. A full offseason to learn the position could lead to better results but the second-half emergence of Bobby Dalbec and the impending arrival of top prospect Triston Casas make it unnecessary to push Schwarber into an unfamiliar role. If the Red Sox do re-sign Schwarber, they’ll plug him into a corner outfield spot in 2022 before handing him the designated hitter role when J.D. Martinez‘s contract expires.
Ohio will always be home for Schwarber but even if his tenure in Boston proves to be short-lived, he’ll always be Kyle from Waltham to us.