And the Cubs' closer is …

… Kevin Gregg. Lou Piniella made the announcement Sunday, picking Gregg over Carlos Marmol. “I couldn’t go wrong either way,” Piniella said. Marmol admitted he was disappointed at the news. Gregg, who has saved 61 games the last two seasons with Florida, has not given up a run this spring in 8 1/3 innings. Marmol has pitched in seven games, and given up four runs on six hits and one walk while hitting five. Both have struck out 10.

– Carrie Muskat

8 Comments

Kevin Gregg… Don’t they say, “never trust a man with two first names!” ?? I’d like to think the Cubs will score enough runs that a “closer” won’t be needed!

Awesome, I’m surprised Lou made this decision, but thoroughly excited he did.

Lou understands the same logical principles that many of us have acknowledged: The Closer’s role is overrated, and forcing your best pitcher to solely pitch the 9th is illogical and downright stupid.

Thank God Marmol is in the stopper role. This move makes our bullpen better. Gregg can’t shut people down in the crucial jams in the 7th and 8th that move often than not decide the game. Marmol would be a great closer, but he’s the ONLY PERSON who can do what he does in the 7th and 8th.

No one should look at this and think Lou thinks Gregg is better than Marmol. Carlos is better than Gregg across the board at everything a pitcher does in baseball. Marmol is 10 leagues above Gregg. This is just a matter of what makes the team better.

Seriously, I give Lou a good amount of crap sometimes, but naming Fontenot the starter and naming Gregg the closer inspires a good amount of faith in me.

Carlos is just not ready to be the dominating closer he can be. If you were to throw him in that spot now and he folded for 5 or 6 it would hurt him twice as much as it would to hold him back for a guy who obviously is not too emotional like carlos is.

Brad Lidge was an emotional closer for Houston but had head problems until he settled down for Philli last year. He was 41-41 in SVO last year. He has been in the league for a while so there is no set timeframe for someone to mature for that role.

It has nothing to do with Marmol not being ready. It has to do with NO ONE on this team able to be the stopper and shut people down when it matters most. The 7th and 8th innings are very often more important and crucial than the 9th, and forcing your best reliever to ONLY pitch the 9th without a good option in the previous innings is dumb. Lou made the right decision, and I’m happy. We’re a MUCH better bullpen with Gregg closing and Marmol setting-up than vice versa.

Confidence and arrogance usually go together to get things done a lot of times. Gregg seems like he has one or the other to where Carlos is still trying to realize that he actually has better stuff. As soon as he realizes that no one will be able to touch him. Micheal Weurtz has that same issue. Pull back throw your slider watch them swing away.

I agree with this decision.

I response to dirkdiggler’s post above – I couldn’t have said it better myself. On the money.

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