9/29 Strikeout artist
Carlos Marmol has 36 saves, which means he’s saved half of the Cubs’ wins this season.
“I didn’t know that,” Marmol said Wednesday, laughing. “They’ve given me opportunities lately and I’ve taken advantage of them.”
He’s converted his last 15 save opportunities, and has held opponents scoreless over his last 17 outings. The only negative is that he’s walked 10 in his last 13 2/3 innings.
“I don’t worry about walks,” Marmol said. “It makes me mad and more frustrated. I keep fighting. That’s all you can do.”
Pitching coach Larry Rothchild has joked that Marmol might as well put somebody on base because he tends to focus better when he does.
“It’s kind of funny,” Marmol said.
Probably not to anyone watching from the dugout.
In 75 games, Marmol has struck out 134, which leads all Major League relievers, and is a franchise record for K’s in a single season by a relief pitcher. He’s averaging 15.94 strikeouts per nine innings pitched this season. The single-season record for a reliever is 14.98, done by the Dodgers’ Eric Gagne in 2003.
“I was surprised when I saw the numbers,” Marmol said. “I never expected to strikeout that many.”
— Carrie Muskat