Chicago Cubs: Carlos Marmol's Spring Hurting His Situation

By Matt Heckler
Carlos Marmol Chicago Cubs
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Cubs reliever Carlos Marmol has had a rough Spring Training, and it is doing nothing to help his situation with the team. The former All-Star closer was almost traded to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim last season for Dan Haren, before the trade fell through when questions were raised concerning Haren’s health. With the coming of absolutely stunning Japanese closer Kyuji Fujikawa, Marmol and his inconsistent control have become redundant.

There was a time when Carlos Marmol was a dominant closer. He won the DHL Delivery Man Award in September of 2010, and made the All-Star team in 2008. His best season was in 2010, when he completed 38 saves with an ERA of 2.55 and 1.18 WHIP. In the two seasons since then, his ERA and has WHIP have ballooned, turning him from an outstanding closer to a middle of the road reliever.

This preseason, Marmol has made only three appearances, but has shown no signs of settling down. In three innings of work, Carlos Marmol has walked two, allowed three hits, and given up two runs, which is good for a 6.00 ERA and a 1.67 WHIP. Conversely, Kyuji Fujikawa has walked none, allowed no runs, and only two hits in the same amount of time (0.00 ERA, 0.67 WHIP).

It is predicted just about universally that Carlos Marmol will be traded before Opening Day, but his value is diminishing with every bad appearance. With recent history comprised mostly of inconsistency, he will continue to be worth less and less to potential suitors if he continues to show that he isn’t able to pitch at the same level that won him an award and made him an All-Star. If Marmol can get his ability back to where it was, he is capable of being a great closer again, but nothing he is doing lately shows that as a likely possibility.

Matt Heckler is a baseball journalist for and a science fiction writer. Follow him on Twitter @androiddreamer and on Google Plus.

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