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Friday

15

July 2011

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COMMENTS

Game 93 – Deathly Hallows Pt. 2: Picking Up Where They Left Off

Written by , Posted in General

Cubs 3, Marlins 6

Box Score / Highlights / Condensed Game

What went right:

  • Soto went 4-for-4.
  • Garza pitched an effective 7 innings, scattering six hits and three walks.
  • Campana gets the award for shining when it didn’t matter, throwing out a runner to end the top of the ninth and then bunting his way on before wreaking havoc on the basepaths to come around and score in the bottom of the frame.
  • Perhaps more could be said about things that went right, but after watching the 9th inning debacle it just doesn’t feel right to look for “positives.”

What went wrong:

  • Marmol + Wood + Quade = garbage 9th inning.
  • Marmol’s line – 0.0 IP, 1 H, 4 BBs, 5 ER (18 balls, 7 strikes)
  • Wood’s line – 0.1 IP, 1 H, 1 BBs, 1 ER
  • Marlins ninth inning – BB, BB, BB, 2B, BB, BB, SacFly, 1B, Groundout, IBB, 1B

9th Inning

Quade, clearly already elbow deep in Saturday’s trifecta picks, brilliantly waited to remove Marmol until he had not only blown the save but essentially handed the Marlins as many runs as they were patient enough to wait for.  It wasn’t until Marmol’s third walk had almost been executed (without a single out being recorded, and barely a strike thrown) that Quade and Riggins managed to find that bullpen phone and get someone up.

At that point, either Russell or Wood uncorked a wild one from the pen that made it almost to Marmol on the mound – classy.  That should’ve clued Quade in that our pen was struggling to locate pitches.  But no, he waited until Marmol had completed that horrible line above, then he brought in Wood (who has proven to be ineffective when entering mid-inning recently).  Wood picked up where Marmol left off.  And then when Russell came in, he was at one point instructed to INTENTIONALLY WALK A BATTER even though there were two outs and Mike Stanton (who was intentionally passed) has recorded a stunning 97 strikeouts already this year.  Is it possible that hair really does make you smarter?

Back to Marmol, with no outs and the bases juiced in a 2-0 game, he gives up a double to the RF corner.  Fukudome and Barney combined for a quick, if less than perfect relay that found its way past Soto.  The Marlins’ Dewayne Wise fell down rounding third and was dead meat.  If Marmol is backing up Soto, as he should be, he corrals the errant relay and Wise is at best, stuck on third – likely he’s out.  But instead, Marmol is bystanding in the third base line having a pity party for himself.  Wise scores, the Marlins take the lead and instead of getting the first out of the inning, Marmol goes back to walk his final batter of the game.

It cannot be overstated, especially after the Cubs put together a bit of a threat in the ninth (even scoring another run) – the Marlins 3rd run was huge.  That Marlins run scored because Marmol loafed.  It’s that simple.  After the 3-run double, the Marlins dugout was laughing at their good fortune – Wise falls flat on his face and STILL scores.  The Friendly Confines indeed.

Moreover, 3 different Marlins’ made valiant attempts to bunt in the 9th inning; all three were blessed with 3-0 counts and eventual walks by Cub relievers.  They were TRYING to give us outs and we wouldn’t let them.

Fire Mike Quade; Hire Ryne Sandberg

I’ll bring the All-Star break to a close with this tidbit:

2010 Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs 58-86
2010 Iowa Cubs 82-62

2011 Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs 53-37
2011 Iowa Cubs 41-50

That’s the difference Manager Ryne Sandberg can make.  He was at the helm for the 2010 Iowa Cubs, and he’s led the 2011 Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs to the best first half record in their history.  I know many of you will disagree with me, but I’d rather be going down in flames with Sandberg while Quade bets the fillies, instead of going down in flames with Quade while Ryno manages the AAA-Phillies.  No way Ryno waits until Marmol hand-delivers a win to the Marlins to yank him – and if he does, who cares, he’s still HOFer Ryne Sandberg.  He’s been vocal again recently about his interest in an MLB job; it’s time the Cubs do right by him or he’ll wind up being to the Cubs what Mike Scioscia is to the Dodgers.

Stars of the Game
Base on Win Probability Added (WPA)

1st Star – Matt Garza (.477 WPA)

2nd Star – Greg Dobbs (.446 WPA)

3rd Star – Anibal Sanchez (.164 WPA)

  • Timo

    Marmol sure made his case that he should not be traded this year.

    How can an “Allstar Manager” (this term was probably never misplaced this badely before) not use his bullpen, even though it comes of an Allstar break and should be rested. What did Quade think after Marmol walks the first two batters? Honestly, any hope I had for the second half vanished with this game.

    FIRE MIKE QUADE!

  • chet

    What a shortsighted viewpoint. One person lost this game last night and it was Marmol. Not Quade, not Wood. A close runner up goes to our anemic offense for plating a whopping 2 runs.

    Carlos Marmol is supposed to be one of the premier closers in the Majors. You don’t yank him because he leads off the innings with two walks. If that was the plan the guy would rarely get to close out a game. The message you are sending in front of the entire team and fans is “I don’t trust you anymore”, then you are headed to watching James Russell or some other bullpen canon fodder close games. If anything this signals that Marmol is vastly over rated as a closer. We can also now tag him with the overpaid logo.
    He is a moron. His brain gets in the way of the rest of his game. He gets out there all fired up and hopped up to throw and forgets how to pitch.

    Jedi, getting Sandberg as a manager wont fix this mess. Just because you can lead the Iron Pigs to a winning record doesn’t mean you can do it in the majors.

    There were almost a half dozen managerial opening last season and nobody hired Sandberg. There is probably a reason for that. I am not saying he wont get a job at the major league level some day, just saying somebody would have given him a shot at the bigs instead of say…..eric wedge or mike quade if he was currently deserving.

    To be honest, I have no interest in seeing Sandberg, or any other former player that I respect, managing this gaggle of losers.

    We are plugging holes right now, waiting for the toxic contracts to fall off the payroll and for the talent to start rolling in.

    Marmol the moron lost this game, not Quade.

  • Norm Bothwell

    “That’s the difference Manager Ryne Sandberg can make.”
    Managers do not make that much of a difference.

  • Buddy

    If I’m not mistaken, Marmol now leads MLB in blown saves.

  • Norm Bothwell

    I can see the “trade Marmol” posts coming! Except you’re doing it wrong, you trade him when he’s doing good and you have to keep him when he sucks, like now.

  • Jedi

    Norm, the problem is that he Ryno HAS made that much of a difference at virtually every stop along the way. Every team he has had wins, and then they suck when he leaves, how long are we going to pretend that it’s a coincidence?

    Chet, maybe you watched the ninth, but it kind of seems like you didn’t. Marmot didn’t even close ton have his best stuff and yet Quade’s didn’t even think about getting anyone up or going to talk to him until it was way too late. We DID mount an effort in the bottom of the inning, the game was NOT over when Marmol was yanked at 3-2. Marmot has shown that it’s obvious when he just doesn’t have it, there should’ve been a visit to the mound and relievers up throwing before he saw a third batter.

  • chet

    Yah, we are stuck with him. He now leads the league in blown saves.

    Marmol is saying he doesn’t feel he can throw his slider effectively right now. Part of this is because he can’t throw his fast ball for strikes.

    The major problem is that he doesn’t picth he just throws….he is a thrower.

    He is basically a one trick pony. If his slider is not effective he is a below average pitcher at best.

    Well, I guess for a converted catcher we got the best years out of him. I feel like every season he goes into one of these funks.

  • Eddie Von White

    Has anyone ever heard of Clint Hurdle – the Pirates manager? Managers make a big difference. Discipline and fundamentals are the responsibility of the manager. The Cubs have neither.

  • Scott

    The way these Cubs are playing, a work stoppage sounds fantastic. Here’s hoping a labor deal doesn’t get worked out! A year off might bleed out of the Cubs system all the garbage that has built up over the past two. Last night was more painful to watch than a root canal. We keep hearing what great stuff Marmol has, but it doesn’t count for anything when it isn’t over the plate. Disgusting.

  • chet

    Jedi, and I am not trying to be a Quade apologist, I think it was the right thing to do to leave Marmol in. It’s his mess, he needs to clean it up.

    One of the highest paid and best closers enters the game with a 2-0 lead. He either gets the save or goes down with the ship trying. Guys like Marmol are supposed to be proven vets not rookies. These are not guys you put on a short leash. The value at this point in a sucky season of Marmol getting out of a bases loaded jam and getting the save is much higher then pulling him and cutting his balls off in front of the home crowd.

    Marmol has to learn some discipline. He has to learn that he needs more then just a slider. A breaking pitch is only as good as the fastball that accompanies it. He lives by the sword and dies by it.

    Riggins isn’t without blame here either. I sometimes wonder if he is teaching anybody anything at all!

  • Norm Bothwell

    Clint Hurdle had one winning season with the Rockies in 6 years, but because Andrew McCutchen is turning into a superstar and their pitching is getting lucky, in the year he takes over, it’s because of Hurdle the Pirates are above .500?

    Jedi, what else changes every single year in the minor league? The players on the team. Last years Iowa Cubs are not the same as this years Iowa Cubs.

    Managers are NOT responsible for 20 game swings in the standings.

  • chet

    Eddie,

    Clint Hurdle has a lot more to work with. He has young hungry players who can be molded. He is not battling 17 mill/year egos. Another reason why I think Sandberg was passed over.

  • Timo

    Sure Marmol lost the game and I agree that you don’t take him out after two lead of walks, but you have to get somebody ready after two walks in a two run ball game.
    Yes, showing confidence in our closer is important, but winning ball games should be the major goal. Marmol did throw 9 pitches to the first two batters and 8 of them where balls (and these were not even close) if it shadders the conficence of your closer if you get Wood up after the second walk than he is not a good closer anyway.
    I still believe Quade did an awaful job in getting the bullpen up to late. As it comes to his replacement I don’t know if Sandberg is the right choice, but Quade has proven that he is not up to the job.

  • Ha…that evidence of Ryno’s managerial prowess made my morning. Thanks.

  • Yavelberg

    So I’ve decided to switch to my last name. Up until now, I’ve been posting under “Aaron” but I noticed someone else posted under “Aaron” yesterday, which actually made me a little bit angry (How dare someone else have the same name as me!). Anyway, I can’t imagine someone else is going to go with Yavelberg. And Rachel, those 10 Wizzies under Aaron were all mine (for the record).

    I’m totally on the Chet side of this argument. Closers have a lot in common with soccer and hockey goalies: they’re the last line of defense, they directly affect the outcome of most games and they all have to be a little insane to play those roles (Marmol definitely falls into all three of those categories). The difference with closers, though, is that if they get into a jam, they can still clean it up. A goalie has a shaky start, his team may be down by two or three goals. A closer has a shaky start to his inning, he probably just has a couple guys on base. Any closer worth his fastball should not only be able to get out of a jam, he should *want* to have the chance to clean up his own mess. Chet is absolutely right: take Marmol out before he can try to get himself out of it and his confidence is shattered. Even if he messed it up anyway and his confidence goes down, at least he had the chance. He still knows that his manager trusted him to get the job done in the first place. If Quade takes him out right away, then he starts worrying about job security in addition to whether or not he’ll be able to find the plate.

    @Jedi – ever see the Simpsons episode where Homer uses a chemical that regrows his hair? All of sudden he starts getting taken seriously at work and is asked to give a presentation on how to improve the power plant. The chemical runs out before his presentation, he shows up bald and everyone laughs at him and walks out before he can finish.

  • Eddie Von White

    Yeah – if you have a scrappy bunch of hungry players that want to win they will execute the fundamentals and win games otherwise lost (not all but some) and will be fun to watch and make their manager look good.

    When was the last time Ram Ram or Soriano actually hustled on a ground ball? I can’t remember.

    The Ricketts are trying to sell the Wrigley experience, but what they are missing is 95% of that experience is when we all sing in unison “Go Cubs Go” after a win. I hate the drive home after they lose. But when they win I don’t even mind paying the 35 bucks it cost to park at McDonalds or the hour it takes me to get back on the Kennedy.

  • cap’n obvious

    I put this in yesterday’s thread, since I was so pissed off immediately after the game I had to post:

    Let me be the first to ask how the hell you don’t back up home after walking the bases full and THEN giving up a 2 run double to tie the game….errrrrr…lose it ON THE OVERTHROW. I learned in JV high school ball at age 13 YOU BACK UP THE PLATE. Hate to say it, but that an organizational flaw…something that Rothschild would have tolerated and Riggins obviously nurtured through the entire Cub system. Anybodt think a Ranger or Giant pitcher would pull that crap?–Can any or all of the blame be put upon the Cubs minor league coaching staffs (including Sandberg) that most of these guys don’t seem to have a speck of an idea of how to play fundemental baseball? I believe yes. Jaramillo was NOT the answer. Riggins is as bad as Rothschild, and was the Cubs minor league pitching guru before this season. How can the performance by this years staff be defended? Quade should know by now that if Marmol throws 8-9 pitches for balls a foot out of the strike zone, he needs to yank him. Right NOW…not after the bases clearing double AND another walk.

    On a positive note, San Antonio beat Seattle 69-66 in the WNBA game last night. And the USA women play for the world cup on Sunday…so I’ve got that going for me. Danielle Adams is a heckuva hoops player, and let’s face it, Hope Solo is pretty friggin’ hot.

  • chet

    Cap’n,

    I agree, Hope Solo is hot!

    Another thing…..before we start calling Sandberg a good minor league manager….take a look at the record….338-315. Quade = 1174-1153……

    I mean if we are going to talk about the “minor league” experience we might as well compare the too. Not much difference in w’s and l’s there.

    Sandberg has had one good season managing the minors….take a look at the roster, how many career minor leaguers are there? How many guys on that roster who hit .300 in AAA and get to the majors and bat .200?

  • Thedo

    Anti-spam word for me: pitch. The relievers ought to try that 😉

    Tough way to start the second half, and does anyone else get a vibe of the ‘Cliff Hangers’ game from The Price is Right when looking at the WPA graph? I think it’s safe to say Marmol (and/or Quade) got the price wrong on that one.

  • Jedi

    Chet, if you read back, my issue isn’t necessarily with when we take Marmol out. Though I would’ve removed him after he didn’t hustle on the double. The bigger issue is that after not being able to find the strike zone, Quade didn’t 1) get anyone up, 2) even check on Marmol to see if he was ok, or 3) do anything at all. Marmol even said after the game that he knew he didn’t have it – how about the manager trot his lazy butt out there and see if that info can be passed along before the closer is allowed to walk 4 different guys (two of which were trying to bunt!). That’s mismanagement. If Quade gets to the mound and Marmol says he doesn’t have it, then that’s something to go on – we can stall, get someone up.

    Just because you take a guy out it doesn’t mean you cut off his balls. Marmol’s recent appearances should make our manager leery every time he goes to the mound with a lead in the ninth.

    Norm – so Ryno just kept walking into lucky situations where he deftly maneuvered a quality team into success? And aren’t the Quade lovers the same ones who claimed that he was responsible for the 34 game turnaround last year? (from 23 games under, to 11 games over). I’ll go with Ryno and his large sample size, because I think managers DO matter; and I think hiring Quade because of some meaningless August and September games was incredible foolish. So far the team results support my theory.

  • Mark

    There are more clowns on the Cubs roster than there are on the Ringling Brother’s roster.

  • Jedi

    chet you’re sounding more like a Quade apologist. I AM a Sandberg apologist. You can call it one good season, I see that since Ryno has started managing, he’s had exactly one sub-.500 season. Ask Quade how .500 looks right about now.

    I don’t like Quade’s decision-making; you call it shortsighted, I call it holding the manager responsible for the competence of the team. I don’t think Sandberg would’ve let Marmol walk back to the mound alone after he’d just allowed the go-ahead run to score because of his laziness. Sandberg’s attention to detail would’ve demanded that Marmol be chided – even if it “cut of his balls.”

    Quade was a great third base coach, he’s been a terrible manager.

  • Norm Bothwell

    Jedi – Yes, the Quade lovers using that 34 game sample last year were being rather ridiculous.
    It’s ALL about the players on the field. The manager will be great on a good team and suck on a bad team.
    The managers #1 impact is on pitching and managing the staff. Quade sucks, but just because Sandberg has a few winning years in the minors doesn’t make him a good manager, and he’d be catching heat right now as well, because the team just isn’t good.

  • mrbaseball2usa

    I agree that a manager won’t make THAT much of a difference, but Q-Ball ain’t a manager, so comparing him to Ryno is comparing apples to baseball managing oranges.

    Fire Q-Ball (is that domain still open)?

  • Jedi

    It’s not ALL about the players on the field – Joe Torre took over the Dodgers and made them great for a few years, then he left and they sucked, with virtually the exact same roster.

    The Cubs didn’t magically change rosters when Quade left last year – but the players weren’t being led by a lame duck manager, and even Quade’s misguided rah-rah was enough to bring the team together for a solid finish. Managers DO matter.

    You’re telling me that Mike Scioscia isn’t an integral, maybe the most integral part of the Angels sustained success? They’ve had crazy turnover and injuries and yet they’ve been fighting for a division title every year for the last ten years.

  • Buddy

    Managers don’t often win games, but they sure can lose them.

  • PackerCubBull

    The manager does make a difference IMO. We might still be a load of crappy crap crap with Ryno, but I think we would be in a better position going forward. Because he would never allow Hendry to sign Davis, Lopez, Ortiz, etc. He would demand the shuttle be moving between Des Moines and Chicago. He would bench Soriano and Ramirez for not hustling.

  • Doug S.

    Lots of good points above, guys.
    Marmol. The book on this guy has got to be “take”. Sure worked last night.
    As for managers making a real difference, I’m one of those guys that believes it’s true and at any level in any team sport.

  • Jedi

    Buddy, that’s the point I’ve been trying to make forever. Quade is ill-equipped to set his players up for success. He’s costing us games with his horrible decision-making.

  • Norm Bothwell

    Jedi: re Torre, 84-78, 95-67, 80-82….
    What did Torre do wrong in years 1 and 3 and so right in year 2?

    Scioscia? I think having 4 teams in the division is his first obvious benefit. But he might be one of the very few that makes a difference of a FEW games…most certainly no more than 8-10 over the worst manager.

  • Jedi

    Norm – he didn’t do anything wrong in Year 1 when he won the division (and swept the 97-win Cubs from the playoffs), or Year 2 when he managed them to a repeat appearance in the NLCS. In Year 3 he was a lame duck manager (see my argument for Piniella’s final year as a Cub) and still got them to a nearly .500 record. I would KILL for a .500 record right now.

    What’s more, the Dodgers finished 4th in their division the year before he arrived, and they’ve been flirting with the cellar in his first year away – WITH BASICALLY THE SAME ROSTER.

  • Norm Bothwell

    OK, so you’re giving him credit for the rest of the division sucking so bad that the Dodgers were able to win the division with 84 wins?

    2007 did not have a full year of Matt Kemp, Chad Billingsley or Clayton Kershaw, and did not have Manny Ramirez.

  • Jedi

    Norm, also remember that when Torre took over the Dodgers, they had won exactly ONE playoff game since the 1988 World Series. They’d had less recent postseason success than even the Cubs. All he did in 3 years was go to the NLCS twice, and upon departure watch as the same cadre of players that he managed spontaneously combusted under a new manager.

    I’ll give him credit for making two straight NLCS appearances, with a franchise that hadn’t been in 20 years. Especially when that franchise immediately blows upon his departure.

  • chet

    okay, if Scioscia and Torre are available then I rest my case. You are right they are great managers. Last I checked they were not out available.

    The funny part is that those teams that they managed so well were once again loaded with young talent.

    I am not sure what point you are trying to make? Is it that Torre and scioscia are better managers then Quade? I agree then…..by a lot.

  • Jedi

    Chet, my point isn’t so mysterious: 1) Quade is a terrible manager, 2) managers DO make a difference, and 3) Ryno has made a difference at every stop along the way in his managerial career. Pretty convoluted and crazy I know.

  • Jedi

    One other thing Chet – you talk about teams loaded with young talent. Who in the Cubs system at the end of last year knew the talent available at every level better than Ryno? He’d managed half of those teams within 3 years. Who knows what it takes to be an MLB caliber player better than Ryno? Who might be able to position the Cubs young talent on the field with opportunities to succeed better than Ryno?

  • Keep going…this is great.

  • ukwildcats23

    i dont blame the manager, the GM deals the cards and the manager just plays what hes delt. i think Mike should be given another chance. but we are in need of a new dealer. we will have a lot of free agent money to spend during the offseason, i say the cubs should not blow it all on one big signing(albert)(fielder)but spend wisely, maybe on starting pitching/bullpen and use players in the farm system for the postions, who knows someone might emerge as a solid everyday player, besides odds are where going to be below 500 anyway for at least 2 to 3 more years might as well give those guys a chance. plus hold on to as much of the money as possiable until a good free agent market comes up and then make a big splash several good signings at once.

  • ukwildcats23

    last nights game made me sick to watch, made me sick for Garza that he had to sit and watch the best game he’s pitched all year get recorded with nothing to show for it. Plus i got a bad flash back when the marlins had that inning and the they showed a shot of Jack Mckeon’s old ass face sitting there in the dugout, My F-in God i wanted to throw something through the tv. I’m for sure not going to anymore games this year, costs to much at the ballpark to get just to get embarrassed every time, and only reason I will tune in is to check in and see how Castro, Barney, Campana, Ramirez, are doing.

  • Mark in Toronto

    While I agree that Marmol blew the game, I also lay blame with the lack of offense yet again. I believe this is now the 2nd time Garza has been denied a win due to the lack of offense (he pitched a complete game giving up only 1 run a few weeks back, which the Cubs lost 1-0).

  • Jedi

    Anibal Sanchez is no pushover, and 3 runs isn’t exactly an offensive famine (it’s still the NL).

    jswanson – glad you’re entertained. Where do you stand on the Sandberg v. Quade issue?

  • CWL

    The manager’s job is to due what his job title implies…..Manage the team he was given. I will be the first to admit that the Cubs roster is total shit. Even with a team of turds, Quade is still responsible for putting the team in the best possible postion to win. This is where Quade fails, and fails over and over again. He continually places his team in terrible spots. Last night, Marmol should have been pulled after the third walk. A few weeks ago, Campana should have pinch ran for Soto. Batting Dewitt 3rd, etc. etc. etc. A good manager with this team would probably still be under .500; but would have won a few more games.

  • chet

    First of all,

    1) Quade is a terrible manager …..based on what? One half season with a train wreck of a team? I will go this far, he is not suited for THIS job. Done and done, but who is to say Sandberg would be better?

    I can’t stand this argument for Sandberg. It is baseless. HE HAS NEVER MANAGED IN THE MAJORS! Quade did everything Sandberg did in the minors and then some. How can one say Sandberg would be better? Unless of course you are one of those that feel his experience playing would translate over to managing? then we have a whole new discussion….

    Managers make a difference but it isn’t huge. For instance, would Mike Quade managing the Yankees make a difference, how about the Phillies? Would they immediately start losing? NO.
    Would the Astros be a winning team with Girardi at the helm, no. Would they have three or four wins more? maybe.

    Ryno has made a difference at EVERY stop of his managing career? This is debatable unless a .500 record is commendable. That is basically what he has amounted too.

    What kind of difference has he made along the way? I don’t see a lot of young guys that he has managed in our system coming up and lighting the world on fire…..

    Jedi, I understand that Quade may not be that great, but don’t try to sell me on Sandberg doing any better. Just because he was a great player does not mean he would be a great manager at the major league level.

  • chet

    I actually agree CWL, a few more games, which with this team would mean 4th place still. No difference.

    We don’t suck because Quade is our manager, we suck because of our GM and our players.

  • chet

    One more question and I am out for a bit….

    After Marmol walks the first two or three hitters who comes in to save the day? There would have been three guys on base at minimum…..You aren’t going to get your pen up with 1 walk ….. So by the second walk you get your arms firing which by the time they are warmed up means at least with stalling and delaying is another batter. So Quade does what we wanted and pulls Marmol as fast as possible, who is coming in to shut down the Marlins?

    Wood – he has sucked lately
    Grabow – yah right
    Russell – Even worse
    Szmardjia – maybe
    Carpenter – hmmmmm

    In other words, the choices are pretty slim.

  • Jedi

    Chet, you don’t see a lot of young guys coming up and getting a fair shake. I’m pretty sure that Ryno wouldn’t have Brad Snyder on the roster for two weeks and enter him into a single contest. Really glad we made that call-up!

    Quade IS a terrible manager, based on his use of the bullpen, based on DeWitt in LF or batting third, based on Baker DH’ing and hitting cleanup, based on Campana being asked to hit instead of pinch-run, based on his penchant for leaving starters in the game too long, or letting Samardzija pitch multiple innings, care for me to continue? I don’t know how clearly it can be stated, Mike Quade does NOT put his players in positions where their talents are best showcased and exploited.

    And just so I’m understand – the Cubs shouldn’t hire a manager unless he has previous MLB managing experience? So we should constantly be waiting for someone else’s retread or buying a manager based on his past success with another franchise? Those are our options, hire a manager who is currently succeeding, or one who has been fired? Because the former would want to come to our dumpster fire, and the latter would obviously be better than someone with zero experience, right? And if it’s so important as to be bolded, why doesn’t it apply to our current manager?

    I feel that Sandberg’s attention to detail and work ethic WOULD translate to managing – two things that this current team could really improve on. You don’t have to believe that Sandberg would do any better, but I KNOW he wouldn’t do any worse.

  • Jedi

    I’ll patiently await your return.

    Russell did quite a good job getting out of that mess last night, and considering that we had already blown the lead, yes I’d have welcomed Russell in the game after the double.

    If it’s me, we should’ve had people up and throwing as soon as that second walk occurred. Riggins should’ve gone to the mound and bought us some time. After the double and the fact that Marmol was lazy in retrieving the ball, I pull him and I put Russell in there. At that point it was still 3-2, there was only one runner on base. IF we manage to get out of it at 3-2, there’s still a chance. But by the time you bring in Wood and let him find the strike zone two batters later, they’re juiced again with no outs and you’re now on your second reliever (a guy who historically has trouble finding the zone right away), and dying to find an out anywhere. That’s mismanagement.

    Tell me this, did it surprise you that Marmol walked another batter after the double? Did it surprise you that Wood walked his first batter? None of that surprised me. If we can’t throw strikes the choice is walk guys and hope they get dumb and start swinging (Marmol and Wood with the stuff they had last night), or let the opponent hit the ball and hope they hit into some outs (Russell’s gameplan every night), I’ll take the latter.

    And that IS on the manager; it’s his job, and the pitching coach’s job to know when their pitcher has it, and when he doesn’t. Quade and Riggins don’t have a freakin’ clue most of the time.

  • Seymour Butts

    I’m with JSwan.. what the hell has happened to this blog?

    Brenley mentioned the ball getting out of the bullpen as a stalling tactic about 2 minutes before it happened, so I wouldn’t take it as a sign of wildness in the pen.

    I look out my office window and see about 300 yards the high school where Hope Solo attended with my daughter. That’s about all I know (or care) about soccer.

  • Jeremiah Johnson

    It’s funny that some of you guys think Marmol has enough ice water in his veins that he can get out of the 9th after a couple walks, but that he’s so mentally fragile that taking him out after those walks would shatter–shatter, I say–his confidence. Can’t have it both ways.

    The fact is you can count on one hand the number of times Marmol has walked his first batter and gotten out of the inning without any damage. I know that from my couch–Quade and Riggins are paid to know it and do something about it. They didn’t and the Cubs lost. End of story.

  • Jeremiah Johnson

    Chet–You raised the question of what impact Quade would have on the Yankees or the Phillies, and I think it’s an interesting one.

    I’d like to see the kind of havoc Quade could wreak on the Phillies starting staff with his poor bullpen choices. I think Halladay wouldn’t put up with the kind of late-inning collapses that has become routine for the Cubs this year. Remember how angry Dempster was last week when Quade took him out of the game? By all accounts, that’s how Halladay is all the time. Then add to that the intenisty that Oswalt and Lee bring to that starting staff. I gotta think that whether it was an early-season ultimatum or a full-on fight in the dugout or the clubhouse, there’s no way Quade still has a job if he started the season as the Phillies manager.

    Not sure how much of an impact Quade would have made with the Yankees this year, since they’ve had their share of pitching problems already. But based on his customary slow call to the bullpen, and his poor linup-building skills, I’d guess he’d be good for at least 5 or 6 more games in the loss column in New York, maybe more.

    Point is, both those fanbases would be livid if their managers made the same routine mistakes that Quade has made all season. Cubs fans are right to be angry–I can’t understand why you’re not.

  • The real end of story is true at every level of baseball: play your position. As much as you all seem to like lambasting Quade for his management style, he has this game figured out. His position is the same as Lou was charged with last season…run these guys out and see what happens. Also, don’t nap.

  • Jedi

    jswanson – that’s just the point. Quade isn’t allowing guys to play their position. Whether it’s DeWitt in LF, or Castro hitting 3rd, or Campana at the plate with the bat over his shoulder. Time and again Mike Quade puts his players in positions where history indicates they will fail.

    You’re confusing management style with mismanagement. It’s not Quade’s style I hate, it’s the horsecrap lineups he fills out and in-game moves that he makes.

  • Jeremiah Johnson

    jswanson–I think part of your comment didn’t post properly. What parts of the game does Quade have figured out? I know you must have given some kind of evidence or pointed to something he excells at, right?

  • Jedi

    How about it Quade lovers? Anything to say about today’s game? After foolishly inserting Marmol (despite indicating earlier that Marmol would be getting a rest), Quade managed the ninth in Friday’s game in the opposite manner of Thursday night. Weird that we won – you know, since managers don’t matter.

    The fact that Marmol was in the game is horrendous though – everyone just had 5 days off, ONE reliever threw more than 12 pitches last night. That same reliever has blown saves left and right recently. And THAT’S the guy you go get when your starter has thrown an 8-inning gem.

  • chet

    I am only arguing two points….

    1) The point where people assume Sandberg would be a better manager for this team then Quade. We don’t know that. Quade was supposed to be a fundementals guy too, just like Sandberg.

    Has Mike Quade made bad decisions? yes. Has Joe Torre made bad decisions? You bet.

    Let’s not forget, that it is the teams play that forces some of these decisions.

    2) Marmol lost that game last night. This is a highly paid closer specialist. He gets paid to do one thing….close the damn game. If he is not right he needs to tell somebody.

    I am not that angry as a Cub fan because none of this is shocking to me. I knew this season was basically a throw away. Next season is too.

    Hendry assembled this disaster. It is his fault we are where we are. It would not shock me in the least if he is the one directing traffic on this team and Quade is just following orders, which is the real reason Quade was hired, to carry out Jim’s plan.

    Blake De Witt gets playing time because Trader Jim has a much larger chunk invested in him. It is how baseball works. The GM’s need their aquisitions to shine. Brad Snyder is a career minor leaguer and we have very little invested in him. Hendry has a year and half left to show baseball he can still make a good trade or signing so these little moves go a long way.

    I would be willing to bet certain “experienced” managers passed this opportunity up because they knew this would be the Hendry show.

    When you go all in with a pair of fours every night, and your opponents know you have a pair of fours, you wont win that much. This is basically the game Quade is playing right now. Jim is trying mightly to turn that pair of fours into a pair of kings at least, but you can’t polish a turd.

  • chet

    I think the bigger issue here is that we have yet another overpaid player “cog in the wheel” falling flat on their face in Marmol.

    We have a large chunk of change invested in Carlos and he is slowly becoming a disaster. Wasn’t this supposed to be a strength when the season started?

  • Jedi

    Marmol has a stretch like this every year – and every year it’s the manager’s job to recognize it and do exactly what was done today. Get Marmol the heck out of the game before all is lost.

  • Doc Raker

    I don’t think I have ever seen such poor pitching since Dempster gave up 7 runs before getting an out earlier in the season. Marmol is not right, fatigue, dead arm whatever- he needs a 5-10 day rest. Problem is Wood can’t throw strikes consistently either. Good for Greg Dobbs and the big RBI double- his brother is my sons baseball coach. At least my family found some redeeming value in watching this debacle.

  • Not understanding a figurative expression fail.
    _
    You guys could blather on forever about this shit. I will cite my actual experience playing baseball. You can have the most keenly put together lineup card hanging on the dugout wall, and it will be rendered completely moot if the opposing team has a dominant pitcher. That is the game. DeWitt in left? Really? Play some baseball, and tell me how much impact the left fielder’s range will have on the game’s outcome. If said position player is involved in a bunch of plays, you have far bigger problems…chances are good your pitcher is outmatched. By the time these guys hit the bigs, you don’t need to tell them that they are being impatient at the plate or playing hops poorly. It would be like your boss reminding you that you aren’t supposed to show up at work shirtless and park your car in the lawn out front…oh gotcha…now we are on the same page.

  • Jedi

    Such vitriol. Not sure what level you played – but I too have played the game. No one is asking Quade to tell them to be patient at the plate or field a ball more cleanly…we’re asking Quade to put outfielders in the outfield, infielders in the infield, and remove pitchers from the mound when they are ineffective. He should draft a lineup card that positions our players in places where they’ve been effective. So far, he’s proven unable to do that.

  • Sometimes, you take a look down the bench and the only one left to go take some hacks is a 70 y/o tax accountant from Yuma. If there is a runner on second with less than two outs, you have to hope he knows enough baseball to try and take it to right. That is the game.

  • Jeremiah Johnson

    Does anyone else think it’s funny that jswanson’s big finishing move of “cite(ing) my actual experience playing baseball” really just amounts to a bunch of hypothetical questions and statements?

    Sorry, jswanson. I tease because I care.

  • Doc Raker

    Silly people, all this fuss about who does what and what goes where. Just know this, the Cubs stink. The Cubs are going to stink for a while, like seasons with and s as in plural as in a long time. Quade, Sandberg, Leo Durocher, whomever writes the line up will skipper a stinky team. It’s all very stinky so don’t stink up eachother. I played at Randy Hundley’s Fantasy Camp on Seymour’s team and had dinner with Billy Williams and Glen Beckert so I know a little something about stinky baseball.

  • You guys are totally correct. I take back what I said, and tip my hat to your insightful comments.

  • Buddy

    I was wondering how long it would take for somebody to toss out the “I played baseball” card (no pun intended).

  • greg

    Damn that Riggins!!!

  • Doc Raker

    You can’t blame all this failure on Quade. I know he is the favorite whipping boy but he was given this roster. It is not Quade’s fault Barney earned the 2b position leaving DeWitt minimal playing time, good for Quade for playing Barney instead of the proposed DeWitt. It is not Quade’s fault he has a first baseman that hit’s .100 against lefties. Not Quade’s fault his starting pitching is last in the bigs. Not Quade’s fault he has one reliever that doesn’t stink up the joint every other time out. Not Quade’s fault.

  • Jedi

    Doc – no one has said that he’s the only reason for ALL the failure. You’re refuting an argument that no one is proffering.

    He is part of the problem, and he’s easy to dump – thus, it should be done.

  • Buddy

    The Cubs pitching has been awful, but not quite Baltimore Orioles awful.

  • Doc Raker

    The problem is the Cubs need a fundamental philosophical change in the front office. The Cubs should be in full prospect development mode and they are not. With all of Quade’s minor league experience he probably is a good choice for a big league team in prospect mode. Hendry signs another big league retread Dave Bush. Really, Doug Davis, Looper, Wellemeyer, Lopez, Ramon Ortiz and now Dave Bush. Barking about Quade getting dumped is like complaining your wine opener doesn’t work when all you have is screw top win jugs. How can you really honestly evaluate it, you can’t.

  • Evaluate? That would require reason, logic, and experience. Maybe insight…

  • Chet

    Well said Doc. He is such a small part of this problem.

  • Larry Sproul

    Was Quade watching the same game we were ? If so get Marmol the heck out of there . My 8 year old nephew even caught onto that . Another blown save for Marmol and lack of offense . THis season cant end quick enough for me !

  • Jedi

    Well said Larry, he is an obvious and daily part of the problem.

  • Chet

    Last word….

  • Doc Raker

    I don’t want the season to end, I love baseball. I saw an exciting Brewer Rockies game last night, it was entertaining baseball. There is good baseball out there, make the most of your summer and take the time to find some of it. The Cubs train wreck will continue but baseball is still here, enjoy it before it is over. Make sure you eat right and get out and exercise also so to keep Michelle happy.