Jack McKeon used seven pitchers last night in a game his team trailed most of the way. Five of the pitchers were in there to face just one or two batters. I can’t help but feel like there’s a lesson there, right or wrong.

  • Apparently, Carlos Marmol’s blown save last night was historic. He became the first Chicago Cubs’ reliever in the live ball era to walk four batters, but not record a single out. The reason a stat like that probably exists? Managers usually don’t let a guy walk three straight, give up a double, and then walk a fourth before pulling him unless they are no longer interested in winning the game.
  • All three of Marmol, Mike Quade, and Matt Garza – who lost another win because of a blown save  – gave boring, head down, “we’ve just got to keep going, tomorrow’s another day, blah, blah, blah” answers when asked about the game. Quade said that Marmol is still the closer, saying “now is not the time to make all sorts of bold changes.” Yeah, why would the Cubs want to make any bold changes?
  • Mike Quade and Ryan Dempster have finally spoken about the pitcher’s dugout outburst from before the All-Star break. Quade, who likened the private nature of the conversation to that of his chats with his girlfriend (ok…), says “everything is fantastic,” but isn’t going to share the details. If you stop and think about it for a moment, how awkward must that conversation – almost a week after the fact – have been? “Ryan, I know you are more of a fixture on this team than I am, and that you make 15 times what I make, and you’re far more important to the Cubs than I am, and you’re far more likely to have a future here than I am, but, like, can you not do that, dude?”
  • According to at least one report, it sounds like Aramis Ramirez’s agent, Paul Kinzer, dropped the ball with respect to his former client, Francisco Rodriguez. The Brewers were supposed to be on Rodriguez’s list of 10 teams to which he could block a trade, but, for whatever reason, Kinzer never submitted the list to the Mets.
  • A radio host in Arizona says the Diamondbacks want Kerry Wood, which would be a bigger rumor if (a) Wood wasn’t so unlikely to be traded, and (b) the same guy hadn’t said the exact same thing a month ago. So, it gets a bullet. No more.
  • One (small) reason to like Mike Quade? When he was detained by TSA for 40 minutes on his way back from the All-Star Game – for no reason, and with no explanation, mind you – Quade never pulled the “do you know who I am” card. Yes, not pulling that card should be the baseline of expectation, but after a half an hour of bullshit at the airport, I’m not sure I would have been able to help myself from saying, “I may be terrorizing fans as the manager of the freaking Chicago Cubs, but I’m not a freaking terrorist.” So, in that way, Quade is probably a better man than I.
  • The Cubs gave up nine walks last night and took just one. Sounds about right.
  • Fishin Phil

    “The Cubs gave up nine walks last night and took just one. Sounds about right.”

    Perhaps we should have Rudy Jaramillo switch jobs with our knucklehead pitching coach.

    Oh, wait, Now is not the time for wholesale changes. My bad.

  • jstraw

    “Do you know who I am?”


    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Ha. Awesome.

  • jim

    Marmol walks 3 batters & no one can figure out we need to have someone up in the bullpen warming up. The dynamic duo of “Q” & Riggsie don’t have a clue on how to win games. Its like “Who cares” attitude in the dugout. Well, the 40,000 fans care & boo’d when you walked out to take carlos out. The pitching coach is another “Yes Man” under the Hendry regime. Its time for pressure to come down from Ricketts instead of a vote of confidence. Marmol needs a new coach to get him through this funk & Riggsy isn’t helping.
    If no one has noticed, Ryno’s Iron Pigs are 53-37 in 1st place.

  • CubFan Paul


  • die hard

    heres what last nights game revealed again about our mgr…hes too scared to take action when it comes to vets because down deep he is in awe of their ability to make a career in majors when he did not…..idol worshipper who fears their wrath…he even said as much in pregame intvw when talking about his All-Star game exp as coach..”felt so good to be next to them” I think he said …..Sandberg would not have had this fear or awe…this emotion led to these decisions: why announce DeWitt knowing that a pitcher change was coming anyway…result was he wasted DeWitt when brought in Baker to PH for a PH….why not bring in Campana to run for Pena knowing that he would replace Soriano for defense….Baker or DeWitt could play first….why not squeeze with Campana on third…..why leave Soto stranded on 2nd after double by not telling one of his idols to move him to third with bunt…why why why….

    • CubFan Paul

      ….crickets ..i was sooo angry when quade finally came to pulled Marmol i committed alcohol abuse by spilling my drink!!! ugh ..im gonna try to be done critizing because the owner has been *done* all season by sitting on his hands. so yea, sit back, fight the growing ulcers &try not to puke in digest til smarter decisions happen

  • Curt

    1st time there are 10,000 fans at wrigley there will b changes we need to get ricketts attention o think the best us way is in the pocketbook

  • Andy

    Ricketts has to make a move soon, if nothing else to let the fan base know he still has a pulse. He seems to only be around when the publicity is high, ala the Yankees series.

    Hopefully this solidifies the fact that the Cubs will be strong sellers at the deadline. Dump salary, use the money to sign Baez, Vogelbach, Dunston, and Maples, bring up Jackson and begin to look onto next year.

    Thank god I chose to pay mlb.com by the month this year for their tv package.

    • Toosh


    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Everything you just said is splendid.

      • sam

        Which is exactly why it will never happen. It makes too much sense.

  • BT

    I’m curious. If Sandberg was manager, would you guys be blaming him for Marmol sucking last night, or would you actually hold the players accountable?

    • Toosh

      Sandberg would’ve quit by now. ’94 all over again.

    • LouCub

      No, because Ryno has 2 things that Mr Clean doesn’t, GUTS and CREDIBILITY!!! If a HOFamer is gonna get in your face you’d better listen or your in the wrong profession,,when a piece of shite like Quade does you laugh in his face!!! Ryno would get into vets face, maybe the player Ryno wouldn’t but this guys on a mission to be a successful manager and he will!!!

      • BT

        And you are basing this on the numerous Hall of Fame players who became top flight managers, right? I mean I assume Ted Williams had guts and credibility. How did that work out for him as a manager? His teams lost over 90 games 3 of the 4 years he managed. Does that make him a piece of shite? When he got into peoples faces, did they listen?

        When is walking 3 straight batters on 13 pitches going to be Marmol’s fault, not Quade’s?

        • MichiganGoat

          Good point, assuming that any manager would have success with this team is playing Cpt. Hindsight. I love Ryno, but assuming that because he says the right thing, has had success in the minors, and is a HOF results in success is a dangerous game. I’m glad Ryno didn’t get the job, we’d still be a losing team regardless of who was in charge. Let us not forget that we thought Q would be successful because of his experience in the minors and hold this team accountable. Pinella saw the problems with this team and got out and we are just watching the death of an uninspired, lazy, and unmotivated team,so it’s wait until next year time… That’s for you TWC.

          • deej34

            I agree MG…. but it’s the managers job to know his players and put them in a position to win. I do believe a “baseball guy” like ryno would have done a better job with this team. 1st place better…? probably not. but definitely a lot closer to 500. how many times has a pitcher been like in “one batter, one inning… hell one PITCH too long?!!” all of the errors. mental lapses… poor at-bats… walks… the handling of both lazy, headcase veterans and inexperiences youngsters… in my opinion, ryno could have done more with the players we have…. no offense to quade, but you didn’t get a head manager gig before because you couldn’t handle it… you’ve proved that this year…

          • http://twitter.com/thomaswconroy TWC

            Aw, *sniff*, shucks, MG. Too kind.

            Between Ryno and Quade, I thought Quade was the right hire for the time. Sandberg would just be helming a sucky team, tarnishing his name in the process. Anyone who really thinks that Ryno would have benched Soriano (or whomever), gotten in the face of (fill in the blank), or demoted (fill in the blank), is just engaging in idol worship.

            • deej34

              That’s a great point TWC… I would LIKE to think ryno would have benched/demoted whoever, but unless they bring him in next year we’ll never know.

              Given his success as a minor league manager and his desire to win, and more than anything else, his demeanor/professionalism and his obvious drive to be a big league manager… lead me to believe he would have shaken cages and not stood for these piss-pour performances. But those are only the thoughts and opinions of another lifelong, pathetically sad cubbies fan….

            • MichiganGoat

              Idol Worship… That’s exactly what makes us think that Ryno would be able to get the vets to play up to their contracts, and I don’t like my idols being tarnished… I keep my golden goat polished and untarnished and would never want it to manage this team.

      • VanSlaw

        Why did the song “Man in Motion” play in my head as I read your response?

        • http://calebshreves.blogspot.com Caleb

          BT has a point though. Once it becomes “the norm” to blame and bash Quade, suddenly everything bad that happens is his fault and some other guy would have done things differently.

          in this instance, I would note 2 things. First, Marmol has often walked a few dudes or loaded the bases and then proceeded to dominate with 3 straight strike outs. Scary and nerve-wracking perhaps, but common nonetheless. Also, managers put a lot of faith in closers and rarely keep them to the same “well, time to pull THAT guy” standard of other relievers. So while you may argue that this was a dumb call in yesterdays game, it was certainly not uncommon or limited only to Quade.

          And the argument that Q’s call was due to lack of “guts” or something to do with his relationship with vets? I don’t see any of that, nor do I see proof from the numerous Quade bashers out there. Sure that explanation fits the trendy anti-Q narrative, but until a reasonable person uses logic, facts, and rational discussion to prove it I’m going to dismiss it as the rantings of misguided and sadly disappointed Cub fans.

          I certainly understand the frustration, but let’s point our hate-cannon at the right targets, at the right time, for the right reasons.

          • VanSlaw

            Yup, I agree. Note that my reply was to LouCub, not BT.

            • http://calebshreves.blogspot.com Caleb

              Yeah, sometimes with the way these replies squish together I get confused. You know, and still drunk from the night before.

              Ah, morning drunk. The best.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      @BT I can’t speak for others, but, if Sandberg had performed exactly as Quade has, he’d be feeling my criticism just as Quade is. I was on board with Quade. He, himself, sullied that with his *repeated* mistakes.

      If Sandberg did the same, I’d criticize the same. But I’m sure I’d feel a little more icky about it.

      • BT

        caleb nicely wrapped up what I was trying to get across. I’m not trying to convince anyone that Quade is a good manager. He’s probably not, but anyone dealing with this collection of tools would look bad (we scored 2 runs last night on a solo home run and a bases loaded HBP. Nice offense).

        I just want people to step out of the frenzy and realize that oftentimes, it’s the players fault, not the manager.

        As an aside, if you were criticizing Sandberg for not pulling his closer after 13 pitches with no time to warm anyone else up, I’d be defending him the same way I’m defending Quade.

        Last night was not the managers fault. Period.

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          I understand your point, and it’s not a bad one. But, as we all know, collossal failures are usually some combination of the players’ “fault” and the manager’s “fault.”

          Marmol was 80% responsible for the disaster of last night. Wood was 10% responsible. Quade, however, was 10% responsible. You keep using the 13 pitch thing as a shield. Let me use it as a sword: Quade watched his closer WALK THE BASES LOADED ON A MERE 13 PITCHES. If that doesn’t demonstrate that a guy doesn’t have it, I don’t know what does. After the second walk – which put the tying run on first base – I’ve got someone up in the pen. I stall. After the third walk. I yank him. There was time if Quade had a plan other than “this is Marmol’s inning.”

          • HotRuta

            Exactly! But based on recent history, you HAVE to be warming up somebody else WITH Marmol. It lets him know that he needs to be focused … and it gives you an option when he isn’t.

            This, and the tons of other mental mistakes made on a regular basis (see below) just prove a widespread lack of professionalism. Few of the players take their jobs seriously, so the little things that make the difference between competing — and just showing up — don’t get done. Obviously, the level of talent is a huge factor, but so is whether or not your players USE the talent tdhat they have.

            Just for fun, watch how most Cubs veterans run to first base … most of them have either upright or leaning-backwards posture. That tells you right there how seriously they take things. If you’re really putting out, your momentum will carry you up the line. Most of these guys already are slowing down before they cross the bag — they must be saving their energy for their next AB.

            As for the pitchers, how many times have they given the impression that they just were slinging the ball up to the plate? It takes concentration and machine-like repetition [fundamentals] to consistently have control — and success.

            I’d also take a close look at the conditioning guy — how many vets have packed on pounds since they got to the Cubs? These come to mind: Derrek Lee (last few years), Soriano, Marmol, Soto, Ramirez, Zambrano … the list goes on …

            • http://calebshreves.blogspot.com Caleb

              When my dad coached my little-league team he instilled in us one value that was almost supreme over all others- hustle. And, specifically, hustle to first base. No matter what, whether you think the guy is going to catch it, whether it’s a slow dribbler, whatever- you HUSTLE down to first. And though there are a few differences between MLB and little league (pause for comments comparing the Cubs to a little league team), my dad would bench someone- in any game- who didn’t hustle to first.

          • BT

            after the second (I’m pretty sure) walk they did get someone up. After the 3rd walk (which took about 4 pitches and 45 seconds) they were stalling. They did everything they were supposed to. I’d also add, that with Dobbs, Marmol found the strike zone again. The Cubs desperately needed a strikeout, and Marmol was their best chance at that.

            Put all of that aside. The reason Quade doesn’t get 10 percent of the blame is that he brought Wood in, and HE SUCKED TOO. Even if Quade had the luxury of managing the game after the fact (as everyone here is doing), the players still would have pissed the game away.

            Put it this way. You are at the blackjack table. You are sitting on 16, the dealer is showing 20. You somehow get a peek at the next card, and you know it’s a 6. You are screwed if you stay (Marmol), and you are screwed if you hit (Wood). Is it your fault you lose?

            • willis

              Scary thing, BT, is that Wood has been about as bad as Marmol lately. I don’t think I would have gone to him in that situation. (gulp) Shark and Russell have been much more effective than Marmol or Wood.

              I’m more with you than against you on this one. The last thing that went through my mind was blaming Quade. I think it could have been handled a touch better, but he and the cubs were f’d the minute the 8th pitch was the 8th ball.

            • CubFan Paul

              BT, no, noone was up in the pen after the second walk (i know for sure cuz i was watching & jumping on my couch like a mad man) ..Quade sucks &No, marmol wasn’t the best choice for a strikeout after he walked 2 guys!!! or the best choice after he walked the 3rd guy

            • HotRuta

              I get your point. I don’t entirely blame Quade for the player performance (although I do think you are underestimating the manager’s role as a motivator/demander of his players), but I do blame him for lack of preparedness. Quade’s got a mindset: Wood pitches the 7th; Marshall pitches the 8th, Marmol pitches the 9th. How many of his last five saves has Marmol blown — four? You HAVE to have him on a short leash. This is not the Instructional League — you’re not suppose to just chalk things up to “learning experiences”; at the ML level, you’re supposed to PERFORM..

              It’s true that the Cubs needed a strikeout, and Marmol WAS the best chance for that — in the abstract. But it was obvious that Marmol was wild — what were the odds that the other team wasn’t going to wait for him to start throwing strikes? I am inclined to take off the head of the bullpen coach; I mean, what’s his job, anyway — is he just the receptionist that answers the phone? He and the bullpen catcher HAVE to know that Marmol didn’t have it last night; why not have someone else up and throwing, too? Is it because nobody thinks it matters that much whether they win or lose? And why do so many Cubs pitchers have rocky starts to their appearances? Do they simply not know how to prepare to go into a game? Where’s the planning?

              I mean, how many times are you going to pitch to Puhols when a hit can lose you the game?

  • Cheryl

    It’s getting so I expect them to lose. Never used to feel that way in previous years. What’s Quades’ goal – 85 or 100 losses

    • LouCub

      @ Cheryl, it’s disgusting, infuriating and heartbreaking everyday!!!! I want Hendry fired immediately, he’s crap

      • VanSlaw

        Yeah! If Hendry hadn’t walked all those batters last night, we woulda won this game, I tells ya!

  • RY34

    Screw you Quade, you freakin suck. Riggins, you suck too! Why should we care after all, it is obvious that nobody in the cubs organization gives a flipping shit whether or not this team succeeds or that this team continues to be the absolute laughingstock of professional sports! The cubs are the most pathetic excuse of a professional team around. With the idiots running this team, no reason to think that it will change over the next 100 years. As i said last night, the only thing that will start the change moving forward is for the stands to be no more than half full the rest of this season, than maybe the ricketts will start heads a rolling. i mean hell, the a’s sucked early on and fired their manager and they were nowhere near as pathetic as the cubs are. Ricketts DO SOMETHING SOON!

  • Vince

    Quade just sat there watching Marmol piss the game away. If any manager ever deserved to be fired, it would be Quade. Rickets should pay fans to watch that sorry bunch with their incompetant boob manager.

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

    I want first credit for this nickname: if Tom Ricketts continues on in silence while the Cubs continue to spiral (which, I don’t believe he is, mind you – I think he’s doing quite a bit behind the scenes), he shall be called…


    • http://calebshreves.blogspot.com Caleb


    • CubFan Paul

      i’ll give you CRicketts (cuz its f’n hilariously) if you give us a post on what CRicketts is doing behind the scenes because whatever he’s doing doesn’t translate to the bigLeague team like it should ..Sandberg’s quote about the communication & winning attitude from top to bottom w/ the Phillies says it all

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        The Josh Byrnes rumor post has a bit of it in there. I don’t know a ton – just enough to suspect Ricketts is hard at work.

        • MichiganGoat

          I have the same feeling. I think Ricketts wasn’t prepared at the beginning of the season to make a major organizational change and has been preparing in secret to make a move at the end of the season. I believe CRickets gave Hendry this year to try and salvage this team (obviously he’s failed) and has been quietly vetting GMs, presidents, coaches, etc. So thatch is confident when he makes the move at seasons end. I’m sure Hendry is on a short leash with pulling off trades (no prospects to be dealt, little $$ to make a trades). I don’t expect big splashes because in order to move the players worth trading we’d have to give salary relief or include good prospects and unless a team is willing to part with a top prospect it’s just not worth it. It’s not like we have Cliff Lee and can expect a J. Smoak, so let’s not get our collective panties in a twist if nothing major happens. We are in next year mode and all decisions will be looking at 2013/14.

          • http://calebshreves.blogspot.com Caleb

            Yup. Ricketts is smart and taking the long view. He’s got the old guard in right now, signed up from 2-4 years. He’s looking past that to what HIS cub team will look like in 2014. He’s not going anywhere, he’s not selling the team- he’s looking at decades of Cub dynasty action.

            I think he will try and free up money if he can by the deadline, but I don’t think he’ll hoard it- I see him lining up guys in the minors who will be ready to be stars in 2-4 years. Plus, I could see him trying to sign every top pick the Cubs made- bonuses be damned.

            I’m okay with that, too.

    • Keith

      Beat me to the punch!

    • Ron

      Love CRickets! Just remember fans live and die with every game management has to work for the long term, we will see Marmol again if not to enhance his trade value but to see if he can be a part going forward. What would changing managers now do? This season is done and things need to change from spring training, a new manager could end up hating this crappy team and want to quit. As I see it we are selling a lemon and need to hide it as best as possible.

  • http://karenscubsblog.blogspot.com/ Karen P

    I couldn’t watch the game last night (we don’t get CSN broadcasts in Michigan), so I had Gameday up and I was just staring incredulously at my computer screen as the little bases went from white to red. WTF Marmol? If now ISN’T the time for a bold move, then when the hell is?!

    • Fishin Phil

      Apparently October 1st.

  • RY34

    Cheryl 100+ losses is quades goal and will definitely happen
    BT is right, granted Quade sucks as a manager, we all know that, but Marmol has pretty much sucked all year as well, he has been a trainwreck moreso than normal from the opening series against Pittsburgh, ironically enough that was his first blown win of garza’s. It is time that Marmol stands up and takes and accepts 100% of this blame. Dont get me wrong, i want quade fired yesterday, however it is the freakin pitchers job to throw strikes and not pitch like a piece of shit everytime out. Hanrahan and Valverde have not blown one save yet this year; two years ago we talked about marmol as if he were a god, now he is maybe one or two rungs above grabow. either demote marmol publicly, find out if he is hurt, or demote his ass to iowa to shock him back into reality because coddling his bloated ass definitely is not working. see this is where we need a manager like ozzie, someone who is not holding his security blanket and binky when the shit hits the fan! i wonder when a move will be made, when we get swept by the marlins, the phillies, or the astros again?? hell this team may not win again this season…………..

  • CubFan Paul

    riddle me this: why wasnt Marmol backing up Home Plate behind Soto when the go ahead run was rounding third and fell and had time to still score? ..that run shouldnt hav scored because of marmol’s laziness ..just like Garza not covering 1st base in the 1st inning letting a runner on ..lazy ..fundementals much? as the great Bob Brenly put it “this is a Dead ass team”

    • Ron


  • willis

    19 games under .500 and counting, but no time to make any bold moves. Hmmm. Now that’s a leader.

  • RoughRiider

    Anybody want to bet that we will soon hear that Marmol has a physical ailment? Pitchers don’t usually go from pitching as well as he has to pitching as poorly as he is. Now that he’s had an issue with TSA anybody know how we can get Quade on the “NO FLY” list ?

    • CubFan Paul

      if only Quade was at OHare getting detained ..he would still be in that little room they took him to & the “managing” problem would be solved ..he wouldnt havta say “do u know who i am” cuz they would know & lock him luggage thats getting sent to Antarctica

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      His velocity has been massively down this year, and he can’t throw his (slower) fastball for a strike. Some folks have thought something was physically wrong for a while.

  • Jim

    Seriously, where do you get these awesome animal posters?

    • http://twitter.com/thomaswconroy TWC


    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I’d tell you, but then I’d have to kill you. And then I’d have to turn you into a hilarious animal picture, and people would probably be creeped out by that.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        And, in all sincerity, I just do some Googling around. Get an idea in my head, and then I try to find a picture to match. Or, sometimes I see an awesome picture, and I hold it in abeyance until I finally get a good opportunity to use it.

  • RY34

    gotta love brenly’s honesty!

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