Cubs Closer Carlos Marmol is already looking sharp during this throwing sessions this spring. That has got to be good news for Cubs Manager Lou Pinella and the rest of the Cubs pitching staff. Pinella had this to say about Marmol’s status: “Marmol’s throwing the ball so easy and is so far ahead of where he was last spring. He’s confident and is working himself into shape.”
Koyie Hill caught Marmol for part of his batting practice session and he echoed Pinella’s sentiments: “Marmol looked very sharp today with his control, breaking ball. We’re going to need him, too. He’s another one who takes a lot of pride and works very hard in what he does. It’s not by accident. It’s not just because he’s gifted and has a lot of ability, it’s because he works his tail off. You can tell.”
Starlin Castro – perhaps the Cubs shortstop of the future – even took a few swings off of Marmol. He stayed his ground on a slider that didn’t break and got plunked in the middle of the back. Pinella was impressed with Castro’s batting – “He didn’t leave — he stood there, to his credit.” Aramis Ramirez decided to skip Marmol’s batting practice session. Ramirez only likes to take BP from coaches during live batting practices or in the cages. So he avoided having to face the nasty Marmol.
That is great news for Cubs fans. If Marmol can pick up where he left off in 2009, he could see a 30+ save-year for Marmol in 2010. And if that happens, that would probably mean good things for the Cubs overall record in 2010.