Many Cubs fans and Cubbies Crib readers double as Blackhawks fans, especially if you are from the Chicago area. The headline grabber no doubt is the Chicago NHL team clinching their second Stanley Cup title in three years and the city has been celebrating from night until morning.
But for Cubs fans, if there is one thing that can pull your attention away for even a moment from the festivities, it may be the news that former closer Carlos Marmol may finally be on his way off of the Cubs. News has broken just a few minutes prior to the time of this writing that the North Siders have designated Marmol for assignment. There had been talk on the off day Monday that a move in general was going to be made with some interleague games coming up. The Cubs had 13 pitchers on the roster and have been thin on infield depth all season long.
However, the thought of Marmol being the victim of the roster did not cross many (if any) minds, considering the front office’s continued stance that even with the former closer’s value at rock bottom, the only way was up. But with the calendar almost ready to turn the page from June to July, there is just not enough time to recoup any lost trade value even if Marmol were to suddenly flip a switch and be lights out from now until the July trade deadline. Thus a move that Cubs fans have been clamoring for since the blown save in Atlanta back in April has finally become a reality.
The move also means that the Cubs have 10 days to either deal Marmol or let him walk. With Theo Epstein and Company having tried to trade him since the off season with no success, it will be interesting to see if the Cubs can even get a bag of baseballs for Marmol at this point.
The right handed slider slinger had a 2-4 record so far in 2013 with just two saves compared to three blown opportunities. Cubs fans were done with Marmol much earlier in the season, but it appears the latest implosion on June 16th against the Mets was the back breaker even for the Cubs front office. However, that does not even factor in the failed holds and the ugly 5.86 ERA. To the righty’s credit, the reliever did make an effort to take the advice of the current coaching staff, including establishing his fastball more and not settling on his slider pitch after pitch after pitch. But the continued failures and the pressure of playing in a demanding market like Chicago may have put Marmol’s mental health and confidence to a point of no return.
Marmol certainly has the stuff to be able to try to bounce back in new surroundings with a new ball club. But thankfully for all parties involved, the time to part ways with the inconsistent ex closer has come.