Momma said there’d be days like this.

Carlos Villanueva had a very solid debut against a quality lineup. His stuff didn’t look overly impressive, but he didn’t make many mistakes, and he was mostly in the zone (and it was a tight zone for him, too). The Cubs’ bats kind of woke up … not that it mattered.

If you’re like me, you’re at least as frustrated with the top half of the 8th inning as you are with the bottom of the 8th or the 9th. The Cubs loaded the bases with nobody out in the top of the 8th, and brought the top of the order up … then scored none. Remember this, if you didn’t already chant it: no lead is too big. 5-1? That’s nothing. Foot on the gas, boot to the neck, whatever your metaphor of choice.

The Braves immediately slapped Kyuji Fujikawa around in the bottom of the 8th, and Carlos Marmol gave up a couple homers to the Upton brothers to lose it.

It makes me sick to my freaking stomach that I don’t get to highlight anything good …

april 6 box

  • Frank

    Per ESPN Chicago…”Sveum considers replacing Marmol as closer”
    Really? How about giving him 50 more chances instead. That way even the Astros will be laughing.

    • spearman

      The question is will Theo & Jed let Sveum replace him. They probably didn’t want to remove him on opening day.

      • Cub2014

        Theo will allow them to move marmol to the 8th
        What value does he have as a closer, regardless
        Of 2nd half of 2012, I think his value to a playoff team
        would be as a setup guy. .

  • arta

    didn’t Dale just say that Marmol is his closer, the season just started, look what he did last 1/2 of last year, etc, etc! a day later he’s thinking of making a change! he never should have been the closer in the first place, he didn’t earn it in ST.

  • LeotheCub

    I would prefer anybody over Marmel. He should be sent to Iowa immediately

  • Die hard

    As stated two weeks ago this team is going to have to need 6 runs a game to avoid 100 losses—- perfect example— my concern is why doesn’t Theo see this and either add another slugger and/or speedster to give this offense an every game boost and promote a pitcher or two and move Marmol to starter or long relief …. Now!!!!… Not wait til All Star break

    • Cub2014

      Actually 5 runs and I believe they would be 4-1.
      Six runs per game they would be 4-0 and still
      playing so so far I would say your assessment is
      Wrong. So far anyway.

  • EH

    I get the idea of waiting for our young talent to develop in the minors (Baez, Soler) but looking at the lineup we need some more players to get excited for. Besides Rizzo, Castro, and maybe Barney the rest are predictable (strikeout, groundout, flyout) players. BTW, time go say bye bye to Carlos M.

  • Tommy

    22 LOB, ugh.

  • OCCubFan

    I believe losses such as last night’s game can have a devastating long-term effect. A good team can overcome one or two such losses, but any more in a short period and it can kill the entire season. A few years ago, the Cubs were doing well into August, then Kevin Gregg blew two saves in spectacular fashion. One of the blown saves was eerily similar to last night’s debacle. After that, the Cubs faded rapidly. Last year, Marmol’s disasters in April killed the season.

    • Cub2014

      Marmol did ruin the start to the season last year
      3 blown saves in first, what was it 8 to 10 games,
      they never recover from that

  • Frank

    Shawn Camp is 56 years old and has never been a closer. There might just be a reason for that. Something about being an effective middle reliever, nothing more.

  • Frank

    To those calling for the release of Carlos Marmol, do you really think that they should maybe let him rebuild some value in middle relief? He still averages out at 94mph, and teams are always looking for reliable, veteran relief in the summer. There’s no point in taking a $10 million dollar bath just to appease the angry mob.

    And to those who don’t think we can get anything for him, remember how awful Latroy Hawkins was at the end of his Cubs career, and we for what was considered a very good return at the time, and he demanded a trade.

  • Beardface

    There are a lot of people saying they’re going to try to lose this season. That is absurd. If that was the case, they would have tried harder to dump Soriano after his really good year last year. I think what everybody in the organization is saying is true. They have to keep their heads above water until Barney, Garza, and Baker get back. I think of they are within 5-10 games of a playoff spot at the break, then they’re going to try to make a push. If not, then it’s time to think about losing like they did last year. We saw the potential the Cubs had when Rizzo was called up. They had a stretch of about 2-3 weeks where they looked very dangerous. I’m going to stay cautiously pptistic this year.

    • Beardface

      Optimistic*. Not sure what just happened with my iPhone there.

  • http://bleachernation DL Huyck

    I was at the game last night in Atlanta. Man that was just embarrassing the way we lost that one! Marmol needs to figure it out or just go.