Randy Wells is Upset and Other Bullets

I am most definitely still feeling chippy about yesterday’s game (and all Marmol-related discussion will come later in its own post)…

  • When asked how the Cubs could get past such a frustrating loss, Ryan Dempster, the man who should probably be more frustrated than anyone, stayed positive. “Through leaders in the clubhouse,” Dempster said of how you recover. “We can either hang our heads and sulk or accept what happened today, learn from it, move on and win a game [Friday]. We have a really good team [with the Dodgers coming to Wrigley Field].” Dempster’s ERA sank below one yesterday, so at least there’s that.
  • Randy Wells was upset about his demotion yesterday (in favor of Dempster, who was masterful): “No, I kind of hate it actually; I’m not happy. I didn’t pitch well so there is nobody really to blame but yourself. It still sucks. You obviously want to pitch well and put yourself in a good position, but the numbers just don’t stack up. It is what it is.” It would be nice if Wells could go back to Iowa and tear it up. That would help his own chances of being called up the next time the Cubs need a starter (rather than, for example, Travis Wood, Casey Coleman, or Chris Rusin), and would help the Cubs when the trade deadline comes around (either by trading Wells or by having confidence that they can trade another starter, and slide Wells back into the rotation).
  • Dale Sveum says that Kerry Wood, who also returned yesterday from the DL, will probably not start back out in the 8th inning. Instead he’ll be eased back into things in lower leverage situations.
  • David Schofield offers a great write-up on the feel-good story of the year: Bryan LaHair. Let’s remember things like that when we’re gnashing our teeth about games like yesterday’s. LaHair did homer, after all.
  • Ian Stewart explains his crucial error in the 9th yesterday, and it doesn’t sound like he thinks he was trying to do too much with the Brandon Phillips hopper (men on first and second, nobody out – it looked like Stewart was thinking about trying to turn a triple play). “I thought the best chance for me to field the ball was to try to get an angle on it and charge it,” said Stewart. “I was just thinking that was the best way for me to field it. I think if I would have got it my momentum was carrying me toward the line and third was right there.”
  • A reminder on language in the comments: I’m not a heavy-handed moderator, and you guys do a great job of using your judgment and policing yourself. Yesterday was a particularly frustrating day, and there was a lot of (understandable) venting going on. I don’t really have a problem with it. But let’s not make f-bombs a regular occurrence. They don’t bother me, but they do bother some folks. So, be respectful, and be judicious. Very occasionally, it’s OK, but, for all other times, save it for the Game Thread.
  • MLBullets at BCB, featuring the possibility of the end of the Mariano Rivera era (and, no, I don’t see the Yankees coming calling about Carlos Marmol unless Larry Rothschild thinks he can “fix” the problem – and, even then, don’t expect to get more than about $400K in salary relief (I’m not exaggerating)).

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

54 responses to “Randy Wells is Upset and Other Bullets”

  1. EQ76

    My first thought when I saw Mo go down yesterday was Marmol to the Yanks… man I hope that could happen.. Maybe Roth believes he can fix Marmol.. we sure can’t.

    1. HuskerCub

      I would send him down to Iowa and bring up Maine. Maybe even put Marnol in Iowa’s starting rotation, not because he can become a starter, but in the hope he can learn to pitch to contact. It seems like batters recoginize his slider and they simply lay off knowing most will be called balls.

    2. art

      or to Ozzie.

  2. Justin Jabs

    So, just to be clear, “F*** Marmol” OK in Game thread, “Fire Marmol” okay in comments?

    1. Richard Nose

      Fart that.

  3. Mrp

    I can completely understand where Stewart is coming from in thinking that he needed to get a double play. With Marmol pitching, you never know when you will get a chance for another out. That is the kind of pressure that Marmol puts on his defense.

  4. Ricardo Gerlein

    Amazing Dempster leading the national league in ERA and no wins. Marmol can not be in the future with this team. Cashner our best arm traded, I hope Anthony Rizzo becomes the next Adrian Gonzalez. My stress levels way up with this guy Marmol.

    1. keith

      he should have been traded last may when we were already out of it. what good is having a closer when there is a whole pile of needs for this team or better yet last years team. jim dropped the ball literaly on this whole situation.

  5. butlerdawgs

    All of my friends that are AL fans were saying that Mo’s injury is the prime example of why pitchers shouldn’t do anything but pitch. I don’t want to get into the whole DH argument, but my argument was that just because he’s a pitcher doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be an athlete. Also, what is with the Yanks pitchers not knowing how to run, remember Chien Ming Wang?

    1. BD

      Also, he has been shagging fly balls for 20 years, along with every other pitcher in the game. One freak accident and everybody wants to keep their pitchers in a bubble.

  6. hansman1982

    The odds are better for Mo to return on June 1 than for the Yankees to trade for Carlos Marmol. I guess every team needs a guy to come in when they are up by 100 or down by 100…

    I guess yesterdays game was good, just as the past few years of the Hendry regime were good. Exorcizing the demons. I would like to believe that Marmol has hit bottom, but I don’t think he has. I just hope that managements opinion of his ability to relieve close games has hit rock bottom.

    Yesterday’s game was good though. Nice to see the Cubs scoring runs without having to use 2 outs to get a guy in from 2nd base. Bosio apparently is doing good work with most of the pitching staff. Sveum did the right thing in taking Dempster out when he did, but then screwed the pooch on leaving Marmol in. Finally, I strongly dislike how Dolis got the BS and not Marmol. Comeon scorer, help us out here.

  7. North Side Irish

    No reason to think this bullpen wouldn’t struggle this season. Bullpen lost Cashner, Marshall, Samardzija and even Carpenter without getting any replacements. Trying to hold on to Castillo isn’t helping either. I would’ve liked to see Maine stick around, but I understand why he got sent down…even Blake Parker would be worth a look if they had a spot.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Marmol comes down with some kind of injury that requires him to go on a rehab assignment or a stint in extended Spring Training to work on some things.

  8. LouCub

    I’m getting sick of Randy Wells bitching all the time about getting sent down to Iowa..Pitch!! and pitch well and you’ll either be up with the Cubs or somewhere else pitching in the bigs..The way he pitched at Iowa after being sent to AAA better not happen again or he won’t be long for baseball.

    1. Cubs Dude

      Yeah, no kidding Lou. He was bad in Iowa and he was bad in Chicago. Wells shut the **** up, and pull your act together.

    2. rcleven

      Well’s needs a change scenery. Maybe Jed can find another team with witch to move Randy for advancement of his career. Maybe for another AAA pitcher struggling for their own organization.

      1. Smitty

        I disagree. Wells needs to shut up and pitch. If he does that, then he will get to stay in Chicago.

      2. Alou and Vinegar

        I would love to get rid of Wells but don’t think he will be traded. You won’t get much for him due to performance and perceived off field issues (bitching and drinking).  He stays because they need someone to pitch in place of Dempster, Garza and/or Maholm after the deadline.

        Bitching and Drinking have also been known as symptoms of Marmolitis.

        1. Richard Nose

          hahahah your name makes me want to piss on myself!

    3. RoughRiider

      Wells needs to go down to AAA and work himself back to the Cubs. However, It didn’t seem to me that he was bitching. It seems as if someone asked him about it and he said he wasn’t happy about it but put the blame on himself. He isn’t happy about going down. I don’t think the Cubs should have any players that would be happy about being sent down and as Cub fans do we really want to have players who are happy about playing in the minors instead of with the Cubs?

  9. John

    @ this point it is going to be a tuff sell to trade Marmol for anything. I am a firm believer that they need to find takers at any cost. If the Cubs are planning on rebuilding from the ground up guys like Soriano, Wood, and Marmol have to go. They are all too connected to the losing tradition the organization is riding itself of. They need to get a posative culture in the clubhouse and it would be a good start to rid themselves of those guys.

  10. SouthernCub

    “Fire Marmol”……..like it!

  11. Edwin

    May the 4th be with us today.

  12. ottoCub

    Mo Rivera’s injury might not make the Yankees suddenly interested in Marmol, but it might make them more interested in Garza, as they might move Phil Hughes into the bullpen.

    1. DocPeterWimsey

      If Hughes goes to the bullpen, then it will be be for other reasons (like his less than stellar performances).  The Yanks have Robertson & Soriano, which is a great pair to finish up games.  Moreover, given their offense, they won’t be in as many “late & close” situations as most teams: over half of their victories are by  3+ runs.

      At any rate, the Yankee farm system is pretty barren.  They gave up their big chip for Pineda, and that’s blown up in their faces.

  13. ichabod

    dolis is our closer, bottom line. ground ball pitcher with a ton of upside. hes got closer stuff and throws a billion times more strikes than oh boy(wont and cant say his name anymore, too frustrating). also, come on sveum, tying run at first nobody out, that was the time

    1. CastrotoBarneytoLaHair

      No…”the time” was after the second walk. I wasn’t watching the game to see if Dolis and Russell were already getting warm when the inning started, but should have been just in case…
      One of the most frustrating things about yesterday was that we all knew what was happening, when it was happening, but had to continue watching/listening to it unfold…

      1. MaxM1908

        I don’t see why it’s so hard to give an ultimatum to a pitcher like Marmol. Making him feel comfortable or confident obviously doesn’t work, so why not put the pressure on him. Tell him before he goes out to the mound, “If you walk the first batter? I’m getting up Russell and Dolis. Walk the second batter? I’m pulling you out.” When you leave him in to self-destruct, it’s so infuriating for the fans and can’t help his confidence. We wouldn’t hate Marmol if he had been pulled after the second walk. If Dolis had saved the game with two on, Marmol would be an afterthought. It seems really counterproductive to leave in a self-destructive pitcher for the purpose of giving them “confidence.”

        1. Stu

          I have always thought that there really is no advantage to having one guy who HAS to be the closer. The decision should be based on match-ups, percentages against upcoming hitters, etc.

          Why is everything else analyzed through megastats, but the relief roles are this antiquated, neanderthal well “we can’t change it” mindset.

        2. FromFenwayPahk

          Guys here have told me that Dolis tends to walk a lot of guys. I don’t know when I’ll be able to stand seeing another Cubs closer come in and walk the first batter he sees. I have PTBBD.

          Post-traumatic Base-on-balls disorder.

          been tw-tw-twitching since yesterday afternoon

    2. rcleven

      Be prepared to go thru a lot of pain with Dolis. Experience is at AA level. He needs to learn how to over come adversity. Watching him this year he seems to loose his focus when things don’t go right for him. As he ages and with more experience I hope he can overcome.

      1. MaxM1908

        I actually prefer seeing Russell in the closer role with Dolis as set-up man. But, we’ll have to see.

  14. CubbieBlue

    Wells needs to just go. I hope they don’t decide to sign him again after this year. He has never been very good.

  15. BD

    My favorite part about keeping LaHair is how inexpensive he could be over the next 6 years. And if he is producing throughout (or even close to that), he can be replaced by one of these very young outfielders working their way up when he is 35.

    1. MaxM1908

      If he continues to hit, doesn’t that qualify him for super two status after next year? I’m not sure how it works, I just thought the arbitration process started early for top players.

  16. cubs1967

    here’s the problem with marmol; so he doesn’t pitch the 9th; instead he blows the lead in the 8th?……..he has to pitch, can’t just hide him in the pen till his contract ends after 2013. riggins last year was a joke; we all know that; but where is bosio in all this. granted, marmol has to throw the pitches, but rothschild had him pitch great in 2010; since then he’s only gotten worse. not really sold on bosio yet.(didn’t get bombs away wood to pitch good in ST either; and he’s a huge part of making the marshall trade remotely acceptable).

    1. RY34

      part of the problem is he got PAID and fat from the looks of it. getting big money destroys the fire in some pros

  17. RY34

    wells is such a baby; face it randy, you didnt pitch well so be a pro go down to iowa and work harder and earn another shot.
    marmol, you just suck and will never get any better; we could only hope the yankees would take you off our hands
    stewart, no excuses just say you helped in costing us the game and move on already

  18. Jay Anderson Jr

    Wells was not complaining about being sent down. He was basically complain to himself about himself. I think he needs to clear his head, because he is a good pitcher. I can under his frustration, having a guy like Volstad in the lineup, who is being babied and still not performing, yet he’s being criticized when he’s has been better then Volstad. Hopefully he gets it together, because if he gets it together, we would have a good rotation with the other four solid starters we have.

    1. Drew

      “yet he’s being criticized when he’s has been better then Volstad.”

      Im not sure if you mean this year, but if you do you are flat-out wrong.

      Wells is a FB pitcher that has to have good control to be effective and whose BB rate has steadily increased every year since 2009 (20.5% of BF this year!). He was given a fair shake in getting his spot back, and failed miserably.

      This also speaks to the argument against traditional pitching stats; Volstad has been labeled, “disapointing” and “terrible” this year while sporting a FIP of 3.21. Wells, in his “good” year (2009) sported a 3.88 FIP, nearly 2/3 of a run WORSE than Volstad this year!

  19. Drew

    I know it has been mentioned (several times) before, but I just got off the phone with one of my business contacts in Chicago and we talked for a while about the Cubs. He told me story about seeing Randy Wells at a Chicago bar hammering down shots a little past midnight 13 HOURS before his start the next day. Granted, this was in 2010, but he got shelled.

    Now, I understand that: 1) This was 2 years ago and 2) There is no way to validate this story, but actions like that are completely irresponsible. I really hope, if given yet another chance to prove he’s worthy of a rotation spot, that he has/will get his crap together.

  20. Stu

    What about Sveum? No criticism about his decisions? He must have Theo pictures….You know a guy like Theo who is wound up a little tighter than the rest of us…

  21. Crockett

    Wells makes me ill. He pitches in the major leagues for longer than he ever should have…with smoke and mirrors as a repertoire, and now he’s complaining about this? And he says he’s mad at himself, but then mentions that the “numbers just don’t add up”? Who exactly do you remove from the rotation, Randy?

    Go back to St. Louis, you whiny bastard. Ugh.

    1. Corey

      I took it as him saying that his numbers weren’t good enough to stay up. To my knowledge, Wells hasn’t ever thrown others under the bus, just himself.

  22. Jared

    WELLS WASN’T COMPLAINING!!! Got that off my chest…now to the drinking portion…Josh Hamilton is a recovering abuser, who fell off the wagon this offseason, yet I haven’t seen his named mentioned anywhere in this convo. Why throw stones, when NO ONE on this thread can verify that drinking affected his game??? If he can’t get it together in AAA, then we let him go, or leave him there as insurance, if nothing else he can fill a void in a spot appearance for DL’d pitchers. Marmol, he just needs to go, no more opportunity!!!

  23. cubmig

    I was never convinced Wells met the bar to be a starter for the Cubs. He did well enough to stick around, but he’s hit the Peter Principle (imho). He needs to better himself or be traded. With new management eyeballing and evaluating everything and everyone, I’m sure Wells won’t have much time to show he can be counted on.
    ..eat!. Here’s to another BIG win today! Cheers