Give it just a minute, it will blow away. Reds 6 Cubs 4.

The Cubs took todays game against the Reds, placed it in a box, closed that box, wrapped it in lovely Cubs printed wrapping paper, tied on a bow made out of ivy and handed it to the Reds as if they were celebrating their 16th birthday.  Up four runs to two, thanks to two very welcomed two run homers from Alfonso Soriano, Dale turned the ball over to Carlos Marmol, who promptly turned it into a hand grenade. Walks to pain-in-the-ass Zach Cosart, Joey Bats and a hit by pitch to Brandon Phillips. Dale went Judy Blume and said "Then again, maybe I won't" and yanked Marmol. In came Hecotr Rondon, who promptly gave up a single to Jay Bruce, a sacrifice fly to Todd Frazier. Another walk-in run and sacrifice fly and the damage was done. 6-4 Reds. The Reds scored 4 runs on 1 hit. 4 runs, 1 hit. One more time.....4 runs....on one hit. Hey hey hey....Come out and play.


Third straight "Yeah, but...." performance for Samardzija.Two runs allowed ( 1 earned.) in 6 innings is fine. A quality start as they say. But once again, Samardzija was done in by throwing too many pitches. 111 pitches through 6 innings is just too many. Part of that was getting squeezed by an ump with a very interpretive strike zone. But part of it was jst not having the tip top command Shark should have to go with his Tip top stuff. James Russell, who still needs a haircut, pitched a nice 7th. We've addressed the disastrous 8th, And Rondon was fine in the 9th.


I can't defend Marmol. I understand the total frustration. I'll never get the hatred people have for him ( check your twitter feed when he pitches...) but the truth is he really shouldn't be on the team. Dale has tried encouragement, tried being tough, and most recently tried "the surprise method" by not telling him what inning he's pitching. None of them works. He eventually goes boom. I've seen it happen to other pitchers to ( Heath Bell comes to mind. there are hundreds of others). I don't blame him. And I don't blame Sveum for trying to fix him. He's on the roster, that's Dale's job. It's up to Epstoyer to cut their losses. The money is irrelevant as he's getting paid either way. There's no trade value. It's best for everyone to just part ways. I know everyone in the front office is busy deciding between Gray and Appel, but this isn't hard, and shouldn't take long.


Nice to see Soriano get it going. Both home runs were that classic upper swing and you knew it the minute they left the bat. Hopefully this is the start of a hot streak. It also helped that Anthony Rizzo got on twice in front of him. Granted once was just getting hit by the pitch. But the second one was a double that should ease any last concerns some might have about Rizzo's struggling against lefties.

Yick. This bullpen really knows how to ruin a good thing. And I think it's more than fair to hold he front office's feet to the flame on it. Afterall, bullpens aren't a product of money and putting a good one together shouldn't hinder any "big plans" that the front office have. This wasn't a good bullpen last year, and the front office basically just switched out the Rule 5 guy. They've tried some things, and adding Gregg has mostly been positive. But every time Marmol blows up, whatever progress or momentum the Cubs seems to build not only stops, it regresses. Edwin Jackson takes the bump tomorrow to try and avoid the sweep. I've got Orb, Normandy Invasion ( Breeding) and the Two Lukas horses (value) in all kinds of bets for the Derby. Onwards.





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  • I will buy every word on 'THE FOOL ON THE HILL' section.

  • For some reason I enjoy watching the minor league games much more than watching the Cubs game... It's just so frustrating to watch 6-7 innings of good baseball from the Cubs and then completely blow it in the last 2... I'd be more OK if other teams were beating us, but we're beating us ourselves... The Reds scored 4 in the 8th... And 8th inning that had 4 walks, 2 hit by pitch and 2 sacrifice fly's...

  • I totally agree, Felzz, about Marmol. I think it's time to give him his walking papers, particularly when Fujikawa comes back. I think the FO was counting on 1 of Villanueva/Feldman to play a larger role in the pen, but the injury to Garza and the lack of progressing from Baker put a big dent in their plans along with Fuji going down early. That being said, knowing that they had a bunch of guys coming off injuries and not building enough depth is (as you said) definitely on the FO.

    And on a tangential note--does it seem to anyone else that there have been a lot of questionable/inconsistent strike zones this year? I should qualify that by saying that I only get to catch about a game and a half or so per week and it could be that I just happen to be catching some bad ones... but they seem worse than before to me. Or maybe it's all the pitch-tracking stuff that just makes it more apparent than in the past... Any thoughts?

  • Marmol is toast, but Fuji will never be a ML closer. So why not try someone that might improve?
    This season has nothing to do with winning anyway. I'd look on the farm for a promising arm and give him a shot. I would omit anyone that could be harmed by getting hammered in a closing role especially if you think he has a high upside. There is really nothing to risk but finishing last in the division, which is probably unavoidable.

  • Marmol should never see the moiund again. I can live with a young prospect blowing saves but this is ridiculous.

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    You could release Marmol and bring up Casey Coleman right now

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    In reply to Dale Miller:

    Please, not Casey Coleman. Maybe they could do it like Chicago politics - have a relative finish out the contract.

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    In reply to Just Win:

    I'd rather head to that facility in the DR the Cubs just built and grab a 16 year old kid that currently just cleans the towels in the locker room than replace Marmol with Coleman!!!

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    In reply to Dale Miller:

    Has it come to this? Release Marmol..... for.........Casey Coleman? Oh, how the mighty have fallen!!

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    Can we just rid ourselves of Marmol and play with one guy short on the roster? This might even help prevent ole Dale from wishing for Marmol to pitch!

  • people ask me why we have marmol on the roster because i am usually known for knowing baseball facts off the top of my head and reasons to everything but honestly i don't get why HE IS STILL ON THE ROSTER. I would be fine with a young guy pitching like mcnutt(talking about maybe later this year in september) can someone please explain to me why Theo has held on to him because i dont know why

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    In reply to kingpro98:

    Trying to create trade value. It's not working. But I wonder how fans will feel IF Marmol is released, the jackass gets picked up and pitches like an All-Star? Would it be wrong to wish an injury on the guy? Nothing too big, just a minor brain stem injury........

  • In reply to bocabobby:

    i just think there are no teams at this point who would trade anyone fro him seeing that nothing stays permmenet for him

  • Yes. It would be wrong to wish an injury on a player.

    I'm not sure why Marmol is still on the roster. My guesses would be A) Dale and Chris Bosio worked with him before, got him to work out his kinks and become an affective reliever again ( Which he was late last year.) And that Marmol wouldn't be affected by the whole failed trade with the Angels. To me once that trade went down, you couldn't bring Marmol back. He was already checked out. But they did....

    By the way, if the Cubs were to release Marmol, I'm more than positive he'd get picked up by another team, and I have no doubt that he would pitch well for a period of time.

  • With StL's bullpen in tatters, I would be afraid to cut Marmol loose and watch in agony while he puts together a monster 2-3 month stretch for the hated Cards...and is still on the Cubs' payroll. ouch

  • In reply to RayA:

    More afraid then watching him pitch!

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    Looking over the Stats guys. This should make all those sabermetrics people happy for what has been preached by the oldtimers for years...... You win with Pitching and defense!

    Also, another thing the Cubs are now preaching is this whole idea of "JUST GET ON BASE!!!" Guess what? We suck in that department as well.

    The #'s just don't lie and it's easy to see why we are doomed for another 90+ loss season.

    I added some notes for comparison sake. I used Texas, Atlanta, Boston and the hated St. Louis ball clubs. I only used these teams because after about a month into the season they are playing the best ball. The #'s also reflect why they are doing so well.

    You can go with all kinds of stats but these are just the simplest form.

    6th in walks allowed 108

    72 walks by starters in 187 innings for 38.5% walk rate

    36 walks by relievers in 81 innings for 44.4% walk rate

    #14 in ERA with 3.84 (Texas #1, Atlanta #2, St Louis #3, Boston #7)

    The Errors

    24 total errors (Texas has 11, Atlanta has 16, St Louis has 13, Boston has 13)

    Fielding %

    Cubs sit at 29!!!! (Texas #6, Atlanta #13, St Louis #8, Boston #11)

    Now for hitting

    Cubs are #25 in hitting AVG (Boston is #5, Texas is #6, Atlanta is #24, St Louis is #12)

    Cubs are #26 in hitting OBP (Boston is #2, Texas is #6, Atlanta is #15, St Louis is #17)

    Cubs are #26 in hitting OPS (Boston is #3, Texas is #5, Atlanta is #10, St Louis is #22)

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    In reply to bocabobby:

    Stats taken from on 5/4/13

  • In reply to bocabobby:

    Where do the Cubs rank in WTW?

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    In reply to Jim Hickman:

    What is WTW? Not a stat guru like some folks.....

  • In reply to bocabobby:


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    It would be interesting to know where these teams sit on the payroll scale!

  • In reply to bocabobby:

    Boston has the 4th highest payroll

    Texas has the 8th

    St. Louis has the 11th

    Cubs have the 14th

    Atlanta the 18th

  • Meanwhile, on the farm...Szczur just made such an exceptional diving catch against the Mississippi Braves that the Braves broadcast actually showed it on a replay.

  • I agree that the bullpen is on management and is certainly up for criticism.

    1. Another lefty in the bullpen should be a requirement. Russell can't do it all alone, and matchups do matter.
    2. Hoping Camp and Marmol are the cuts when Garza and Kyuji return.
    3. I'm up for Kyuji, Rondon, Gregg, Russell, and Bowden for the revolving closer role. The latter 4 have exhibited fantastic control thus far. If they beat us with the bats, fine, but no more free passes.

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    I'm done with Marmol...It's really affecting my mental state of mind. plz. plz. plz. FO. if you care one bit about your true fan base you will cut him now! There's no trade value and its not healthy for the starting pitchers thinking they have to pitch 9 innnings to get a win. Theres something good going on here but this Marmol situation is ruining it. Theo,if you really wanna win now you'll let him walk! sorry guys but I had to vent ...

  • Other than Dolis are there any other possible closers in AAA?

  • Here's my very un-educated guess. When Fujikawa is eligible to come off the DL, Marmol will be placed on the 15 day DL with a "mild elbow strain,retroactive to May 4" They'll give him a couple of rehab stints here in Des Moines. It "seems" that when someone does bad, it was because they were injured - thus the DL stint. I figure I have about a 10% chance of being right on this. Enjoy the articles and comments, keep 'em coming.

  • Also, nice article on Brett Jackson in today's Des Moines Register. Here's the link:
    Hope it works, thanks.

  • Statistics say Carlos Marmol has now appeared in 453 games.

    And yet after 453 appearances, the Cubs bullpen and Carlos himself still can't tell whether he's got anything when he is warming up? Can't tell whether he's going to strike out the side or whether he's not going to be able to throw a single strike?

    I'll admit that my next bullpen session will be my first. And I understand that adrenaline flows differently once you get to the real mound; I get that, really I do. But I find it incredulous that Carlos could pass bullpen scrutiny yet not be able to throw a single strike once he gets into the game (Dale was quoted as saying that NONE of Carlos's pitches were strikes yesterday).

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