(AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
Jason Marquis – I’m going on record right now and calling for Marquis’ head on a platter. His time in the rotation is finished. Last year, he was brilliant in the beginning of the year and made the signing look like a bargain. Of course we all know that the season went south from there and Marquis was eventually left off the playoff roster. It’s not the first time that’s happened in his career either. Did you know that every year Marquis has been in the majors, his team has made the playoffs? He got his start in Atlanta in 2000, when they were in the midst of their long run of division titles. In 2004 he went to St. Louis and the Cardinals won the division all three years he was there. Last year, after coming to the Cubs, he found his team in the playoffs yet again. Eight seasons in the majors and yet Marquis has only been on a playoff roster in three of them. That’s a pretty glaring stat.
This year Marquis is not even off to his hot start, and has an ERA over 5. If he was the only option for this team in the rotation, then obviously you need to stay with him, but the Cubs have plenty of options in that spot. With Jon Lieber, Sean Marshall and Rich Hill all capable of pitching in the bigs, it’s getting to the point where Marquis time in Chicago needs to come to an end and the spot needs to be filled with someone who can get the job done.
The numbers support the case. Marquis has seen his control take a hit, as evidenced by today’s wildness on the mound in the early part of the start. His BB/9 has increased over the past few years. He’s giving up more hits as well. Increasing the walks and hits, logically, can only increase the runs given up. That can only be a bad thing.
Don’t get me wrong, I like some of the intangibles that Marquis brings to the mound. He fields his position extremely well and handles the bat with the best of them. Unfortunately, those are just a small portion of the game for a pitcher. The main portion, the pitching, he’s just not that good at. Don’t let today’s win fool you. Marquis’ days need to be numbered.
Micah Hoffpauir – Before everyone gets all jacked up about his selection from AAA, I want to make you aware of a few things. First, Hoffpauir is a bench player, plain and simple. Second, he is not and never will be a starting position player in the majors. That being said, I think he can get the job done in Ward’s absence, but I look forward to Ward returning to full strength. I think the most important thing for Daryle is to rest and make sure he’s 100% before he comes back. Hoffpauir can fill in and do the job well enough until then.
- Micah Hoffpauir is the 14th homegrown player to appear for the Cubs this season
- Soriano had 5 hits in a game yesterday for the second time in his career as a Cub. The leaders since 1956 are Billy Williams and Don Kessinger, who both did that four times in their Cub career. For Kessinger, one of his was a six hit day.
- Yesterday was just the second time this year that the Cubs scored 4+ and lost.