Morning Marquee: Cubs Bullpen, Mark Grace and more


Prior to injury, Jason Motte had a superb year for the Cardinals, and was one of the best closers in the game. Now two years removed from those injuries and healthy, is he ready to return to that form? Hector Rondon had a spectacular year, especially down the stretch. But should he falter, the Cubs bullpen will have several insurance pieces, including Motte.

Another one of those arms is Neil Ramirez. The PTBNL (which could inspire a guy to succeed even more) in the Matt Garza deal, finished the year with a 1.44 ERA and a 10.9 strikeouts per nine innings. With Joe Maddon – a skipper that likes to do things a bit differently – Ramirez may get a chance to shine even brighter for the Cubs in 2015.

Mark Grace had a fine career with the Chicago Cubs, but in the end there was some bad blood, words were said, and the relationship deteriorated between the organization and one of its finest first baseman. Would the Cubs ever consider retiring his number? Should they retire it? Our Tobey Johnson makes the case.

‘Is Jason Motte the Cubs next great closer?’ – Cubbies Crib

‘Reds, Chapman avoid arbitration, reach deal’ – Blog Red Machine

‘Making a case to retire Mark Grace’s number’ – Cubbies Crib

‘Tony Watson is the biggest trade chip for the Pirates’ – Rum Bunter

‘Neil Ramirez poised for a big 2015 campaign’ – Cubbies Crib

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