If you were watching another team, you probably wouldn’t believe it.

Should I just copy and paste the preamble from Thursday’s game? Starting pitching good, just enough offense, and then Kerry Wood and Carlos Marmol combine to blow the game.

The Cubs slapped Gio Gonzalez around early, and knocked him out before the end of the fourth inning. But then the Cubs’ bats went lifeless, thanks in large part to the best reliever in baseball, Craig Kimbrel. What’s that you say? Craig Stammen? Who the hell is that?

Matt Garza had an overall solid outing today. The only runs he gave up came when Garza allowed a two-run homer to Adam LaRoche (on a decent pitch), after which Garza went absolutely nuts in the dugout, stomping around, screaming in the general direction of the field. That was the kind of thing we heard about before Garza came to Chicago, but didn’t see much of last year. But, within seconds, he was sitting calmly on the bench looking downward, regrouping. So, it wasn’t really a big deal.

It didn’t much matter, because the bullpen did to him today what it did to him all of last year.

  • BleacherBum

    Good to see Marmol is picking up where he left off last year with the blown saves. Guess Kerry Wood should have put in more than 5 innings this spring. Dolis and Camp looked good today at least.

    • bricky9

      If Marmol works hard,he can eclipse that 10 blown saves last year by June

  • TedTop16

    Actually, I think these failures are pretty good so early in the season. Theo can’t have any false sense of security with this bullpen. As fans, we are going to find out early in the season how they are going to react. Are they going to sit and do nothing? Or are they going to work the phones and be proactive and make changes immediately? We’ll get an early sign on how management is going to operate.

    • art

      didn’t Theo just say they were sticking to their plan no matter what they do this season.

      • hansman1982

        nonsense – Theo should immediately abandon any plans after two games. Hell, Joe “John the Baptist to Theo’s Jesus in Cubs circles” Girardi had a boner of a moment in inning 1 of the season.

  • DocPWimsey

    He couldn’t have gotten a hold today: he got the loss. He should have gotten a blown-save, too.

    (Conversely, you can get blown-save wins: a huge proportion of reliever wins are BS-X, W-Y, although fans often forget that.)

    • Spencer

      I guess the box score is wrong then.

    • hansman1982

      According to MLB.com: (http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/official_info/about_mlb/rules_regulations.jsp)

      If a reliever comes into a game to protect a lead, gets at least one out and leaves without giving up that lead, he gets a hold.

      Also, a hold is not an official stat.

      Wood left the game without giving up the lead. Now the runners that he allowed on base ended up being the go-ahead run, therefore the loss. Very possible to get a hold and a loss. Also, very Cub-like to get a hold and a loss.

      Edit: The MLB link above says that the hold was created to credit middle relievers with a job well done. Well, Wood did a good job not allowing the lead to evaporate, therefore the hold, however, he did allow the tying run on base that someone else let score, therefore the loss and Marmol getting the BS. Credit and blame where they are due in this situation.

  • Rooster

    Marmol get on a plane to Alaska. Wood, grab a mic and interview coaches and players. Theo hows that Marmol-aid you’re drinking…makes ya wanna puke. To think that Papelban, Nathan, Cordero, etc were all out there. We eat 9 million of Marmol-aid…thanks Hendry. Epstein better fix this piece of #@## bullpen. Why even waste my time with these jokers. MLB pitchers, more like low A ball. Ridiculous.

    • Eric

      Um, why fix it? We aren’t going anywhere this year. The best you can hope for is the worse record in baseball for the #1 pick in 2013. And then hoping for guys like Garza, Smardzija, Voldstad, Stewart, Jackson, Rizzo, Barney, and Castro to play well. Because those are the only players that will be with us next year. That an a few of the young bullpen guys. You’re reaction makes me think you actually expect them to compete this year. And they won’t.

  • jim

    Cubs goin for the draft choice!

  • johnbres2

    Wood/Marmol blowing these games has no significance whatsoever in the big picture, of which neither of them are a part. The only significance I see so far in big picture terms is that Garza pitched well. We want him to do well so we can trade him for assets mid-season. Also, one can watch Sveum for managerial qualities in these games.

    • Brian

      If they are not in the big picture, then why are we using them to close out the game while Dolis and Camp pitched decent? I would rather see them get an opportunity to close the game than see Marmol and Wood continue to blow games left and right.

  • Dougy D


  • RY34

    ah screwi it lets just go 0-162 and call it a season!

  • Cheryl

    There are positives to this like MG says. Mather seems like he’s here to stay. Starlin has done better at fielding. There will be chages in the bullpen. By the end of April there will be a new closer if Marmol keeps on like this. Look for some trades to start within the next two weeks. Byrd will be elsewhere. We have yet to see what LaHair can or cannot do when this is only two days into the season. And the starting pitching has been fairly good. So there are positives.

  • art

    wasn’t this guy Dolis a closer in the minors? everyone knew we’d have a losing season but, i would have liked to have gone with the kids like Jackson, Rizzo, and Dolis.

  • http://www.facebook.com/cubman87 Leroy Kleimola

    Can I get guesses on what game and who hits the first homerun this year for the Cubs?

  • Joshua Edwards

    I had to leave after the 5th inning, so I did what any loyal fan would do: self-imposed media blackout.

    Naturally, after catching up on the implosion I decided to get online and catch up on the outcry. All I can say is, thank god the Nats don’t have Drew Storen right now. They don’t need a 5th closer. Pretty sure they made the right call going with Mattheus, too. Cub hitters never did pick up the rotation on his stuff.

    On a related note, I hope Washington throws in one of their superfluous bullpen arms when we trade them Marlon Byrd.

    We need, like, four of them.

    • HotRuta

      If you continue to stop watching the game after the fifth inning, you’re likely to have a much better opinion of the season than those who watch entire games …

  • supergeek24

    Its kinda funny that with this new cubs way the old way is still blowing us games

    • TWC


  • Ivy Walls

    Fans will over react and here are my thoughts. Regardless of my past affection for Kerry Wood and his spirit when you are on the playing field you have to produce, just ask Tiger Woods. Competitive athletics is about winning your contests and Wood is not winning. I feared this situation this winter when he held up the Cubs contractually and the fans celebrated…they celebrated the past and not the present.

    Sveum Woody needs to go down a few notches and either find his ways to get 3 outs or be outed.

    Marmol, he was always a great illusion, A wicked bender and blazing straight one but now the league is catching up that the bender often is not a strike and the straight one is quite hit-prone. Another Hendry contract demanded by a fan base.

    Dolis looked interesting and why has not Russell seen any action?

    In the end I really don’t care how a team wins, just as long as they win more than they lose, but losing two in the 8th inning is well psychological.

    tomorrow, another day but i bet Samardz presses after two very good starts by the staring pitching.

  • Jeremy

    I’m thinking that it could be possible that when the Cubs and Sox play each other this year they will both be going for their first win of the year.

  • ty

    So Zambrano went totally nuts in the dugout today–first game for him–whoops-that was Garza! We were warned to expect this someday.

    • drew

      Big difference between what Garza did and what Z used to do. Blowing off some steam is fine, but punching your teammates is a little different.

  • Nate

    I blame Jody Davis. Everyone knows you don’t say “Let’s get some runs!” when the Cubs are winning!

  • ferrets_bueller

    Thats a pretty hilarious pitching box score- How often do you see a guy take a loss, while getting a hold, while another guy gets a blown save? usually the loss and BS go hand in hand.

    • TWC

      Stupid damn MLB pitching stat rules. Idiots.

    • hansman1982

      credit where credit is due. Wood left the game without surrendering the lead, therefore the hold, Marmol allowed the runners to cross the plate to tie the game – blown save – they were Wood’s runners – the loss.

  • EvenBetterNews

    There will be 2 highlights all year long.

    1. Matt Garza gets traded and brings back our top 3 prospects in our farm (this is after Jackson and Rizzo come up).

    2. The first round pick in the draft will sign and won’t end up with mono.

    • Yohler

      I seriously doubt the Cubs get much of a return on Garza even if he has a decent year for two reasons:
      1 – Clubs are starting to value their prospects far more. They’re cheaper and the drop in production isn’t equal to the drop in pay. Clubs don’t want to be in a position like the Phillies and Yankees, they have no choice but to pay huge dollars to keep signing top players because they have no farm system – oh, the Cubs fall in there as well except we get the double trouble because they haven’t drafted well either.

      2 – The whole league has leverage because they know the Cubs are in a rebuilding mode and they’re going to get low-balled on any trade

      • hansman1982

        3 – teams like the Tigers and Angels get stupid around trade deadline time and are willing to overspend.

        If the Tigers owner wants to see a ring so bad he is willing to spend 9/220 of his children’s money on Fielder…he will tell Dombrowski to get Garza at any cost, if Garza is the best available at the deadline.

        Just remember – owners are dumb and GMs listen to the owners when the pass an edict

        • Stinky Pete

          FYI- Doug Fister to the DL…

        • Yohler

          If the tigers were willing to sped all that money why didn’t they pull the trigger? Because they feel like they have in house options that are less costly. A willingness to spend doesn’t make them reckless.

          • MichiganGoat

            because they weren’t willing to give up the prospects for two years of Garza, but with Fister on the DL they may be more willing today than they were over winter.

  • http://bleachernation.com RicoSanto

    Marmol is awful,his slider just hangs over the plate.He hung one to Tracy but he fouled it off.
    The worse thing about Marmol, is Hendry giving him almost 10 million for next year.

  • Yohler

    All of this talk about relievers needing to be moved is a moot point. The Cubs are so low on talent that there will always be a weak link that will be exploited. Yeah you can put some newer guys in the mix but with the way the game is scouted they’ll find a weakness within a few days on them too. Bottom line is we don’t have the talent to win consistently and any players they likely trade for will not be in a position to make an impact for the next couple years while they ride out these bad contracts (see: Soriano, Marmol, etc.)
    This is like the Bears winning a game – “They’re going to the Super Bowl now!”

  • ferrets_bueller

    What did I say at the start of the offseason?
    Oh, yeah…the most imperative thing the Cubs need to do is get something of value for Marmol while they still can, because he’s toast.
    Too bad the closer market got shot to hell, because Marmol likes like toast.

  • NL_Cubs

    The Opener and today’s game was like watching the movie Ground Hog Day.  Not too concerned about Wood figuring it out but Marmol could be laid out on the shrinks couch for therapy soon…if he isn’t already.

  • al

    Kerry Wood! Cubbie Pride! Cubbie Dignity! Clubhouse savant.

    He must have a blister after pitching two consecutive games. Can we please lose him and get an arm from Iowa?

    Speaking of Iowa, while I have an unhealthy fondness for Reed Johnson, can we get a leadoff hitter up this week?

    RJ leading off smacks of panic and desperation, and I realize that I am describing the championship season after a game or two. Just how bad can it be when Reed Johnson is the lead off hitter?

  • Cheryl

    Hopefully we don’t lose three in a row. April may be a trying month this year. But the club has improved. Keep in mind that a championship team isn’t built in one year. After this year’s draft there should be a marked improvement in the farm system and eventually that will show up in the Big Leagues.

    • Ben

      “Rome wasn’t built in a day!”

  • Ben

    it is going to be a long first 2 months of the season considering the schedule….I they will unload anything of value (or try to) in June and July…. well anything that is a “short-term asset”

  • ty

    Jody Davis should have been managing us today instead of singing in the 7th inning. He took our prospects to the Championship at Daytona 3 years ago. He knows the big league guys and our minor league guys like a book. Instead we have Milwaukee, St. Louis, Boston, San Diego guys and it will take them forever to figure out 150 players. They do not pay a price–they have a lengthy honeymoon period–but we fans who buy season tickets are screwed.

    • JustSwain

      Come on, its not that bad. The only thing better than being at Wrigley watching the Cubs lose is being at Wrigley watching em win. I live in Minnesota and the last time I watched my team play live Mark Prior was the Cubs starter. They are finally coming back my way this year and I’ll be at all three games, heck as bad as the Twins are, they might win one of em. I can understand disappointed, but screwed?

  • http://bleachernation.com grace

    All I can say is hurumph. Frustrated? YES pissed off YES! Still a cubs fan 4 SHO! Talk smack all ya want! Nothins guna change till we get the ring wsccccs. Decifer that

  • http://bleachernation.com grace

    To those who love the cubs cheers. To those who hate the cubs cheers. To those who bleed red and blue…. Let’s party……..for once times r changing. Don’t get down just keep rootin..we will prevail……… Korski4012

  • http://bleachernation.com grace

    I’ve been reading this wesite for the last couple years. Love the crap out of it. Thanx Brett. Not tryin to ruffle any feathers. P.S. I live in IOWA. Its a beautiful state. Tranquil. But boring as shit. GO HAWKS GO CUBS GO CORN, I ment GROW CORN. Keeps the world go round