Tribe looking to sign former closer to minor league deal
Yes, Cleveland Indians’ fans, we’re hitting that “early” panic button, at least in regards to the bullpen. That’s probably not the only place we need to be mashing it (Offense please?!), but it’s a start. But the start is with former Chicago Cubs closerCarlos Marmol
. With covering the Cubs, I can tell you that this is a low-risk, high-reward signing for the Tribe. If he can find any semblance of the pitcher he once was, this could work out well for the Indians. BUT, it can also go horribly, horribly awry.
Marmol, now 32, last pitched in 2014 for the Miami Marlins. The struggles he had in Chicago continued there, as he posted an 8.10 ERA in 15 appearances before he was released. The Cincinnati Reds signed him, but he pitched in only three games for their Triple-A affiliate before leaving the team.
Word is Marmol is throwing from a new arm slot, and was showing off that same low to mid 90’s velocity from his heyday with the Cubs. Marmol posted a 2.54 ERA and 441 strikeouts in 308 1/3 innings out of the Cubs bullpen from 2007-10. But in that stretch, he also averaged 5.6 walks per nine. Either by plunking them or missing the zone on four straight pitches, he could make it interesting.
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But when he was on, and could control that slider, he could be light’s out. Right now, the Indians have nothing close to that. The bullpen is a mess, as the guys that were counted on last season aren’t meeting expectation. Cody Allen has four saves in 11 games, but has posted a 9.00 ERA. Scott Atchison, Nick Hagadone and Marc Rzepczynski all have ERA’s over 4.00. Clearly Marmol would need some seasoning in Triple-A for a bit, but could be a good pickup for the Tribe.
We’ll keep you posted on the Marmol news, and any other roster news that could (should) happen in the coming weeks.