On the surface, this was a very nice win for the Cubs as they persevered, fought back, rallied and came from behind to win 4-3 over the Marlins at Bi Tax Scandal Park in Little Havana Miami Thursday night. Now granted, you have to ignore the fact that tonight's opponent gutted their entire team over the winter, has an offense worse than the Cubs and really had no business being in the game. But when you've had the beginning to the season that the Cubs have had, you're willing to do just that. It looked like it was going to be easy peezy for the Cubs when David Dejesus led off the inning with a double to left center and scored 5 and half seconds later on a Starlin Castro single. But Edwin Jackson went to the zoo early, throwing 35 pitches in the first frame, allowing the Marlins to tie the game and leaving the bases loaded. The next inning was just as bad as 57 year old Juan Pierre would drive in a run with a single and eventually score to give the Marlins a 3-1 lead. Blue plate specials for everyone. But the Cubs would claw into the game. In the 4th, Nate Schierholtz would double and score on a Beef double. And in the 6th Schierholtz would continue his great start by doinking a ball off the right field fair pole for a game tying home run. It stayed that way until the 8th when Luis Valbuena would hammer a Steve Chisak slider that didn't slide into the right field stands where at most four people were sitting and most likely taking a nap. Carlos Marmol, who according to Dale Sveum is not the closer, came into save the game. And while Marmol ran the sphincter scal to about 5-maybe 6 Karats, he would eventually get the save, striking Mike Stanton. ( I know he wants to be called Giancarlo, but when you swing at some of the offerings Marmol was heaving up there.....you're Mike.) Let's cross the T's and dot the I's....
YES THEY DESERVE TO DIE AND I HOPE THEY BURN IN HELL!!!!!!!
A total Down and up outing for Edwin Jackson. He was infuriating the first two innings. What was with all the breaking balls? This is a poor hitting team in a humongous park. Challenge people! But 1,2,3's in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th curbed the situation. And while the 6th was harder than it had to be, he came out of it with a quality start. ( I believe that's the 5th of 15 quality starts the Cubs were able to win.) Edwin has a 4 year deal, so it suggests he's going to be around. He also is the most veteran starter. So being the first pitcher of a 4 game series, Jackson had to give the Cubs some innings and not throw the bullpen into (further) chaos. He did that. Rondon pitched a useful 7th and Camp was solid in the 8th.
EVERYTHING IN IT'S RIGHT PLACE.
Everyone hates Carlos Marmol and I understand. But here's the thing. Camp and Russel are at their best in the late 7th and 8th innings as match-ups dictate. They shouldn't be moved out of those roles. Gregg and Loe are fill in guys that really should pitch in the 7th or when the Cubs are behind. Rondon, while more than impressive, is a rule 5 project who ail pitch sparingly. Basically, when Marmol is in the closer role, everyone else is slotted correctly. And since no one can really close any better than Marmol right now, the only thing you're doing by going to another closer is forcing other pitchers out of their best place in the bullpen. Did his inning stress me out where I thought I was bleeding out my eyeballs? Well, yeah. But Marmol standing in the closer's role allows everyone else to hit their marks. So I'm good with it.
Nate Schierholtz made me look pretty good tonight, as he was my WTLF candidate. 2-4 with an RBI and two runs scored. Nate now has a line of .313/.362/.578 which is higher than anything I thought he'd hit. Well...maybe that OBP. But still, darn impressive. And before everyone puts him on the July 31st trade list, he might have more value as a cheap outfield starter for the next couple of years as opposed to the marginal prospect he might fetch in a trade. Especially if the Cubs continue to sit Brett Jackson in favor of Bogesevic. Yo, Arguello, what's up with that?
So one down against this awful team. I know Feldman is scheduled to take the bump tomorrow but I still think 2 more wins against this team is not just possible, but probable. The Cubs won this one the right way. Now's certainly not the time to pick nits about the opponent. Win this series and give this road trip a positive spin. Onwards.