Chicago Cubs News

Carlos Marmol Wants An Extension

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While the Chicago Cubs may not be spending big money on any of the available free agents, they may spend a large amount of money on a player that is already on their roster. According to Hoy’s Dionisio Soldevila (Via MLB Trade Rumors), Marmol told the Cubs that he wants a long term extension, and that the two sides have discussed a long term extension already. However, all indications is that it is still early in the process, and nothing is close to being done.

In all likelihood the Chicago Cubs are going to tender Marmol a contract sometime between now and tomorrow, Maarmol is in line for a big raise since he is entering his second year of arbitration. But, the Cubs could possibly avoid arbitration with Marmol, if they are able to get a long term deal done before February. However, the question must be asked, is it worth the risk to sign Marmol to a long term extension?

The reason I suggest it may be a risk for the Cubs to sign Marmol to a long term extension, is because of his violent delivery. The knock on Marmol over recent years, is that he will never be able to hold up, considering how aggressive his delivery to the plate is. Meaning the Cubs could possibly sign Marmol to an extension, but, then have Marmol break down because of his delivery.

Here is a take on Marmol’s Delivery by George Dakow of Chicago Now

"Carlos Marmol,An interesting case, Marmol’s delivery reaches the dreaded “upside down W” position…the only difference is that Marmol’s body compensates before his shoulders turn and place his upper body in proper position. When he fails to do so, his control suffers…If he fails for extended periods of time, his elbow will fail him too."

For those of you who don’t know, one of the worst things a pitcher can have in his delivery, is that “upside down W” position. While Pitching a ball is still not a natural movement, including the inverted W position puts a pitcher at extreme risk to injuries. Recently, Stephen Strasburg had to undergo Tommy John Surgery, which was a result of his delivery including the inverted W position. Other pitchers that have this motion such as Mark Prior, Kerry Wood, John Smoltz, and A.J. Burnett have seemingly all had Tommy John Surgery.

So going off of the history of pitchers who have the inverted W in their delivery, you have to believe that Carlos Marmol is a ticking time bomb, as far as when he is going to need Tommy John Surgery. Because, one of the biggest struggles that Marmol has had in recent years, has been controlling his delivery. If those problems continue to exist, then Marmol will be in line for a major elbow injury. While Marmol did in fact have an excellent year last year as the Cubs closer with 38 saves and an ERA of 2.55, you can not avoid the fact that he is a huge injury risk.

I have never been a fan of a team signing a pitcher to a long term deal, especially a reliever for that matter. Which is why I think it would be foolish for the Cubs to rush to extend Marmol to a long term deal. Because, with the exception of the Mariano Rivera’s and Trevor Hoffman’s , relievers are hot and cold in this league. One year a reliever can be at the top of the game, and the next, he may not be able to get an out in an inning. Also, Carlos Marmol is under team control through the 2012 season. Meaning, the Cubs can afford to wait before they extend him.

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