View From The Bleachers

Talking Cubs Baseball Since 2003



December 2011



A Look At The Sean Marshall for Travis Wood Deal

Written by , Posted in General


Reaction to the Sean Marshall Trade – Because of when the deal happened, we really didn’t say much about it. In case you missed it, Sean Marshall is now a Red in exchange for Travis Wood and well as minor league prospects, Dave Sappelt and Ronald Torreyes. The thought process was that while Marshall was perhaps the most dominant lefty out of the pen in baseball last year, he was dangerously close to free agency that probably would not have netted any sort of meaningful compensation under the new CBA and has been turned into three players under team control for five years. There has been a lot of reaction about the trade, and from a Cubs standpoint, I feel like most of it has been positive.

Keith Law of had this to say “The Cubs made out well, giving up a good reliever who is a year from free agency and getting back a big league starter and two mid-level prospects who will have major league value.

Sappelt looks like a very good extra outfielder. He has a simple swing, short to the ball with good use of his lower half, but he can’t handle center field except on an emergency basis, and his size and swing aren’t going to produce the power to profile every day in left. He makes a lot of contact, however, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him hit .300 — but without the OBP or power to make him a regular.

Torreyes is a tiny second baseman — Baseball-Reference has him at 5-foot-9, 140 pounds, and I would bet he’s shorter than that — but he has two above-average tools: hitting and running, with good bat speed and a simple swing for high contact rates. He could end up an average regular at second, but he is probably three full years away from the majors. Wood alone justifies this deal for the Cubs, but the chance that Torreyes becomes an everyday guy turns it into a potential big win.” (Source)

I like the trade a lot, despite the fact that Marshall was one of my favorite Cubs. People have clamored that he should have gotten the chance to move back to the rotation, but it just wasn’t going to happen. Look at the comparison between time as a starter vs. time as a reliever.

Split          ERA    IP HR  WHIP SO/9 SO/BB
as Starter    4.86 311.0 45 1.434  6.1  1.79
as Reliever   2.67 219.0 11 1.183  9.4  3.12

Instead we pick up rotation depth with high upside as well as adding depth to the farm system in exchange for a bullpen arm.


  • Manny Corpas been added to the bullpen, signing a one year deal. Corpas spent the entire 2011 season rehabbing from Tommy John surgery.
  • Yorvit Torrealba busted an umpire in the chops last week in winter ball. (Video). If you’re MLB, how do you deal with this? Is there a suspension for conduct that casts a poor light on the game?
  • Myron Logan of The Harball Times took a look at the Jed Hoyer tenure as San Diego Padres GM. Among the moves evaluated is the signing of a certain catcher who likes to hit umpires.
  • Theo has poached from the Red Sox, signing Matt Dorey and Kyle Evans as part of the scouting team. Dorey will serve as the national cross checker, which is a position that follows up nationally on the reports that the area scouts submit on local prospects.
  • Take a look at the worst pitcher contracts in history. Thankfully, the Cubs have no one on the list. (Source)
  • Got an iPod? Wanna move music off of it, but don’t know how? Use Sharepod? I used it yesterday and copied my entire iPod library and backed it up on my external hard drive. Merry Christmas to me. (LifeHacker)



Got the latest CD by NeedToBreathe for Christmas and this is the first single off of it. If you’ve never head of them, give them a listen. They’re a great band with a sound that kind of reminds me of a cross between U2, Train, and Tom Petty. I’d love to hear what you think of them.


    Don’t you need mp3 files to put the music on your iPod? I just drag and drop my mp3 files into iTunes, and if I want to get it off the iPod, delete from iTunes and sync it with the iPod.

    And I think Torrealba should get some suspension. MLB ought to have an off-field discipline system like the NFL and NBA do.


    Why isn’t Zambrano on that list? His contract is pretty bad

  • When I import my CD’s into iTunes, it takes up a ton of space on my main hard drive on the laptop. If you delete them out of iTunes, you have the burden of reimporting them, which can take countless evenings of mindless cd switching.

    This allows me to copy the songs from the iPod and put them on the external drive, since I already deleted them from iTunes a year or so ago.


    I don’t even know how to do that. I just rip the songs off the CD, and then do the drag and drop

  • Doc Raker

    Politics is more interesting than IT Ipod drag and drop chatter. I like Marshall and hate to see him go but know it is best for everyone involved. The irony of the Cubs finally having a superior bullpen man in Marshall and a flawed team after all those years of having a contender with a flawed bullpen is bittersweet. Trading Marshall to a contenda in exchange for young talent was the right thing to do for everyone involved.


    I disagree Doc. I am always looking to learn things about the computer. Of course I am never going to know how to write code, and write a great program, but learning troubleshooting stuff is always good.

  • Randy

    That list of bad pitcher contracts only really looks at cost per inning pitched. Zambrano in the past has been a workhorse until the last two years, so it isn’t surprising he isn’t on that list. However his contract is terrible, at least it is now.


    And that’s very flawed. What if a guy is just eating innings, but he is doing a lousy job at it?

  • Doc Raker

    The ‘worst pitchers contract’ is defined by money spent on innings pitched, no account for the quality of innings pitched. I would say Kevin Brown is the worst pitching contract when you figure in quality of innings because of the enormous amount at the time. Remember the Dodgers had two of the worst pitching contracts at the same time, Brown and Driefort and then signed another in Jason Schmidt not to long after. What a fall from grace from the pitching rich O’Mally era of the Dodgers.

  • Spotify makes iTunes look like a phone booth.
    Best pitching contract? Old Hoss Radbourne. 678.2 IP in (18)’84.

  • Doc Raker

    I left out Ashby for the Dodgers. So the Dodgers had Kevin Brown, Darren Dreifort and Andy Ashby all on terrible contracts at the same time. Furher more, Dreifort’s name breaks the ‘i before e rule’ which should of been a clue something would go wrong.

  • Danny B

    Jswan, love your comment and couldn’t agree more. I’ve discovered so much music on Spotify.

    And if mental makeup (or lack thereof) was factored into that contract list, Z would be at the top. His attitude turns him from a B pitcher to someone that should be out of baseball. I’m waiting to see if he dons a Cubs uniform at all next year to assess my faith to Theo and Jed.

  • Eddie Von White

    Joe – Need To Breathe has been a favorite of mine for awhile – Been listening to them for years. My favorite is “Come Lay ‘Em Down.”

    I think we will regret the Marshall trade.

  • jgod42

    “I think we will regret the Marshall trade.”

    I think that is the beauty of the Marshall trade. There is almost no way the Cubs can regret it. The only way is if they have a miracle season in 2012 and wish they still had him in the bullpen.

  • Doc Raker

    Z will play for the Cubs and if he ever increases his trade value he will be traded. Theo and Jed are not going to give him away for nothing, they will be able to get something for him in June or July assuming he puts up average Z numbers prior.

  • mrbig

    @Joe- I also have been a fan of Need to Breathe for the last few years, I like Lay em Down, and We could run away.

    The only thing I wish would have been done differently with the Marshall trade is that he would have been traded out of our division. I can just see a few years down the road Marshall comes in to close the game and knock the Reds into the playoffs, and the Cubs out.

  • Marshall is just as likely to be back in Chicago a few years down the road as he is to be in Cinci.

  • Eddie Von White

    When Marshall turns out to be a premier left handed starter for Cincy…

  • Keep in mind Larry Rothschild had Marshall for five years and didn’t make the conversion. I suspect that there is something going on…you take that chance in a heartbeat if the gamble can give you a mid-rotation guy, let alone a premier starter. I don’t see it happening.


    Marshall started his MLB career as a pitcher and did a great job. It’s the Dust Bag’s fault, because he got yanked from the rotation after 1 poor start. As if the great ones never have a bad start.

  • Buddy

    Didn’t Marshall have something like 59 starts over his Cub career?

  • Well, Baker is awarded a second chance. I bet they hug it out.


    The Dust Bag is still there? Wow amazing how people can be duped into thinking he’s good, when really he had Bonds in SF, and a roided up Sosa his first 2 years here. The Dust Bag is going to ruin Marshall, like he ruins every good pitcher he gets. I would never hire him as a manager. Maybe as a hitting coach, but that’s about it.

  • Eddie Von White

    Well I do remember Dennis Eckersly mediocrity as a Cub starter for years, then he got traded to Oakland and someone in Oakland saw something in him no one ever saw in Chicago and he went on to dominate as a closer (except for Kirk Gibson).


    An old guy I work with told me the Cubs traded him to Oakland because he refused to be a reliever, and then in Oakland LaRussa was like you’re going to be a reliever, and you’re going to like it.

  • Doc Raker

    That is very believable BLCPB. “Your going to be a reliever and go to the hall of fame.” What were the odds of that happening? Think about it, a mediocre starter gets moved to the pen just like so many mediocre starers have in the past. It is considered a sign of decline to be moved to the bullpen and this Dennis Eckersley character ends up in the HOF because of that move. Ironic.

  • Eddie Von White

    BLPCB – Who you calling old?


    A guy I worked with at Domino’s. He’s 65 and he delivers pizzas in a BMW