JAY DAVIS: Cubs do son a favor and release Marmol
Tuesday was a good day for my 12-year-old. Well, it was good for me, because I just might get to have someone to watch Cubs games with again.
That is because the Cubs finally parted ways with embattled reliever Carlos Marmol. The team finally decided they had had enough of his inconsistencies and designated Marmol of assignment.
When a veteran is designated for assignment the team has a couple of options, all designed to send the player on his way. The Cubs have 10 days to either place Marmol on waivers, release him or trade him. If nothing happens in 10 days and he clears waivers, Marmol can be asked to take his designation to the minors and stay a Cub or he can opt for free agency.
The most important thing is that Mike can watch a Cubs game with me again.
You see, the first time Mike got to go to Wrigley Field, Marmol screwed up a wonderful day. We got to Wrigleyville hours before game time. We toured the area, bought some souvenirs, took pictures, the whole nine yards. During the pregame, Mike got to lean on the brick wall just to the outfield side of the Cubs’ dugout. He was a mere feet away from the catcher as the pitcher warmed up pregame. Matt Garza pitched that day and threw eight shutout innings. The Cubs led 2-0 entering the ninth inning.
And then the Marmol experience happened. Marmol came in to walk three straight batters and then give up a bases-clearing, game-losing double. My boy was so mad that he stood up, stripped off his brand new Starlin Castro jersey and declared, “That’s it, I’m becoming a Yankees fan!”
Of course he didn’t become a Yankees fan; that would have been too much for his father to bear. But the experience did leave him with a bad taste in his mouth. I believe he has struggled with Carlos Marmolphobia since.
We’ve watched one Cubs game together this year. The Cubs led all the way, but it got late in the game and Mike was on his way to play a video game. There was no way he was going to see his favorite player to hate come in and blow things up again. Marmol did not pitch that day, but that’s beside the point.
The Cubs stink again this year, which is nothing new. But they do have some interesting young talent and are getting better. What is most important though, is that the man who stole my game-watching partner is gone. I think maybe Mike and I will watch a game together soon.