What Should GM Jim Hendry & the Cubs Do with Closer Carlos Marmol & Starter Matt Garza? — Wrigley Field 2/2/11

Posted on 02 February 2011 by Lou

What will the Cubs and General Manager Jim Hendry do with Closer Carlos Marmol and Starter Matt Garza.

Marmol has emerged as a reliable and dependable closer.  He has 2 years of arbitration left.  Marmol is seeking $5.6 million for the 2011 MLB season, while the Cubs have offered $4.1 million.  Will the 2 sides meet in the middle or will the case go to arbitration?  Or could we see the 2 sides agree to a long-term deal that locks in Marmol as the Cubs closer for 3 or 4 years down the line.  A 3-year, $20 million deal or a 4-year, $30 million deal could make both sides happy.  The Cubs would get a little discount while Marmol would get some added security given the fact that he as averaged almost 80 appearances over the last 3 seasons.  That is a lot of mileage on one pitcher’s arm.

The Cubs face a similar dilemma with Garza, although, Garza still has 3 years of arbitration left.  Plus, Garza has yet to pitch in a Cubs uniform, so it might be nice to wait a year to make sure both sides are happy before entertaining long-term contract talks.  Garza and the Cubs agreed upon a $5.9 million deal for the 2011 MLB schedule.  If he keeps winning 15 games and racking up 200 innings pitched, he would likely command $10 million in 2012 and a little more than that in 2013 (his last 2 years of arbitration).  Will the sides try to come to terms on a long-term 4-5 year deal?  It would be in both sides’ best interests, but again, it will come down to dollars.  I have a feeling that the Cubs will hold off on Garza until they see how he handles the pressure in Chicago where fans have long-suffered without a World Series title for way too long.

We’ll keep you posted on either front as soon as anything happens…

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