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Marlins reach 1-year deal with Carlos Marmol

    The Marlins have agreed to terms on a 1-year contract with former closer Carlos Marmol, who could provide back-end bullpen help for the Marlins and also serve as ninth-inning insurance for Steve Cishek. If he doesn't find a way to throw strikes and record outs, though, he could also bring back hellish memories of Heath Bell. Marmol will receive $1.25 million.

    MarmolMarmol, 31, served as the Cubs' closer until falling out of favor in that role and getting traded to the Dodgers last July. Marmol saved 38 games in 2010 and 34 in 2011. (See stats here). When he's good, he has filthy stuff, averaging 11.7 strikeouts per nine innings over eight big-league seasons, nearly all of it with Chicago. He was a whiff machine in 2010 when he averaged nearly two K's per inning. But he has also battled major control issues. Over the course of his career, he has walked 385 batters in 563 2/3 innings. Over the past two seasons alone, he has walked 95 batters in only 104 1/3 innings.

    Not good.

 But the Marlins were looking for veteran bullpen help, and preferably someone with closing experience, in order to fill the role created by the departure of Chad Qualls.

    Marmol must first complete a medical physical before the deal becomes official.

    Marmol's bouts with wildness have been well documented (read here, here and here), prompting the Cubs to yank the closer's job from him before sending him to the Dodgers, who left him off their playoff roster.

    The Marlins are obviously hoping a change of scenery will help Marmol, and that he'll find spacious Marlins Park more to his liking than the friendly confines of Wrigley Field. But home plate is the same size at one as it is at the other, and Marmol must prove he can throw strikes. Heck, Marmol isn't the only erratic arm Marlins catchers will have to deal with in camp this spring. Don't forget Henry Rodriguez, who signed a minor-league deal earlier this winter.

     Marmol becomes the second player to reach agreement with the Marlins this week, joining backup infielder Jeff Baker. To make room for Marmol and Baker, the Marlins will have to lop off two players on their 40-man roster.

     He wasn't the only reliever the Marlins reached a deal with on Thursday. They also signed right-hander Chaz Roe to a minor-league deal with an invitation to spring training. Roe, a former first-round draft pick of the Colorado Rockies, appeared in 21 games last season for Arizona, going 1-0 with a 4.03 ERA. He struck out 24 and walked 13 (three intentional) in 22 1/3 innings. The D-Backs designated him for assignment last week to clear roster space. Roe refused the outright assignment and became a free agent.


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Camera Mike

I know this is going to sound mean, but am I the only one hoping he fails his physical? Whatever the question a team has with their bullpen Carlos Marmol is never the answer.

Curious George

when does Marmol report to the Metro Zoo for his physical? Hope Dr. Ron Magill is a Marlins fan. Fail.

Victoria Elliott

I see the Marlins don't have any new strategies for this coming season. Still giving one-year deals to other teams' cast-offs and intending, once again, to go as low as possible with their payroll. It's getting very old, folks!

Flav C.

Things just got more interesting.

Flav C.

From all the offseason moves so far, I'm sure Marmol is the (in)famous "Loria's Pick", joining the select group that includes Bell, Buck, and Ozzie Guillen.

FireMarshall Bob

When and if Marmol comes into a game, fans in the lower sections will be required to don an asbestos suit,kept under their seats for Marmols outings. Also the Fire Dept. will be standing close by ,at the ready.

Camera Mike

Flav, I believe you've hit the nail on the head as that is the only way this move makes sense.

Lou Vales

Has anybody told Hutton? He has been saying for years he can't stand Marmol. A real display of "journalistic" integrity coming up.


Loria's next call....dialing...Renyel Pinto


3 k's 5 walks per inning great 8th inning guy cishek is going to have to earn them.


They should pick up kendrys morales

Flav C.

Lou - Hutton already had a "tweeter-tantrum".

Rolaid - please tell me the line was busy!!

Juanv - Cishek will have to start specializing on being a 2-inning-inherited-bases-loaded type of closer.

What a fun season this one is promising to be!

Stan M

Let us hope and pray that the Marlin's relief pitchers do so well in Spring Training that Marmol doesn't make the 25 man roster. With that salary it's probably not going to happen though.

Flav C.


The Marlins ate $8m of Bell's salary and $1m of Rauch's salary last season.

I'm sure they would eat Marmol's salary if he starts screwing things up.


Oh man, if the Marlins keep scraping the bottom of the barrel this hard they're gonna burn a hole through it.


flav C, marmol definetly makes it fun he can walk three in a row then strike out three to get out of it he seems to love the high rope but the last few years not so fun for him. In a way a lot of money for low risk/high reward. But he has closed before and has experience, Just hope it doesn't turn out to be a Jorge Julio. I like the baker deal though good numbers against lefties. with all these signings I am curious to see where deitrech and Solano end up. wouldn't mind seeing one of them take a spot and run with it.

Stan M

Flav, your analysis on last blog was right on target. Here is my take on this coming season and beyond. We can all find some point to criticize about this off year signings. Personally, I love the Marlins because I enjoy watching the kids develop and then surprise. This trend was violated, but each of the contracts is short term and just might help the team to be competitive in this year which is still really one of transition. What I think is of paramount importance is that they kept all of their ML and prospective pitchers within the organization for another year of development. The free agent market was either too expensive, or the premium players carried too much baggage. In my opinion, this team already has the ingredients to become a powerhouse, especially in this huge ballpark, perhaps as early as 2015. I think Keith Law seriously undervalued our farm system. I would have ranked them in the top 5 or so, particularly because our prospects are there to fill or augment this particular team's needs. We don't need more prospects. If we make a trade, we should trade some of our "B" prospects to fill bullpen needs. Even if Stanton is moved. I would want a dominant catcher or second baseman for him over just more minor leaguers, no matter how good they are. One thing that worries me. I'm reading that Salty will bat in the middle of this lineup. If he hits from 3rd to 5th, it will not bode well for our improvement. However, if others do well so that he can hit 6th or 7th, where he rightfully belongs, I could see a better chance for improvement in the standings.

Looking beyond 2014, I want to see more defense in the OF. I would like to see either Yelich or Stanton (if still around) moved to 1B and an outfield of Marisnick in CF, Ozuna in RF and Keys in LF. I see Dietrick as having the potential to be a lesser Utley. He has the swing, he has both gap and HR power as well. What he doesn't have is plate disclipline and that in many cases can be an acquired skill whereas the others are either there or they aren't. II even think Hech has a decent swing and when he connects, it is with authority. Should he also acquire some pitch recognition, which isn't impossible, we would have a gem at Ss, even if he hits in the mid 200s.

Lou Vales

Clark, Just put Stan on the payroll. He has earned it--NOT being facetious.

Marcos Rodriguez

Not here to defend Loria..hell, I am the one who keeps asking why he is not in jail for fraud....but all these 1 year contracts with "washed up" players is like going fishing....how many times do you cast off hoping that on one of those cast you actually catch something. If Furcal, Marmol, and the other strays have somewhat a successful season, then the gamble pays off. Just pisses me off that one of those guys may turn out to do just that, then they can take credit for the "smart" signing of a veteran presence.

Stan M

Some of you might think me crazier than I actually am when I say that plate discipline can be an acquired skill. Well, one of the few benefits of being an old fart is that you've seen an awful lot even though you can no longer remember what you had for dinner last night.

Right after WWII, the Brooklyn Dodgers had a tremendously talented kid named Duke Snider. He had one major fault, that being that he thought he should swing at anything the pitcher threw. Branch Rickey, the GM had a string arrangement made that duplicated Snider's strike zone and that was used for some time. He further hired, I think, a retired ML umpire to stand behind home plate and Snider was required to stand in the batters box without swinging at all and simply call out "strike" or "ball". The umpire would do the same and this went on for a very long period. The end result was a HOF career. That is why, in my early stages of senility, I really think that Dietrick, Ozuna and Hech could/might show improvement in laying off certain pitches and become better hitters. LoMo alreadt had that skill and I hated to see him go. Despite the above, I do have worries about Marisnick. Yes, he too swings at all the wrong pitches. But for some reason, I sometimes fear that the overall bat speed simply isn't there and I don't think instruction can do very much for that. And boy do I hope I'm wrong because the guy is a superb outfielder and base runner, and he also has the God given ability to hit for power.


Can t wait to hear what tommy Hutton says the first time marmol I s in a game, another front office blunder, at least it won t be hard to get good seat s this year, as if anyone cares,


Am I the only one who's convinced that Tommy Hutton's rants against Marmol were a running gag with Rich Waltz playing straight man? Marmol's performance against the Fish was often laughable, but that's a reason to love the guy when he's pitching against you, not hate him. Still, Tommy did manage to back himself into a corner with all his smart-ass comments and it'll be fun to watch him try to wriggle his way out the first time Marmol pitches for the Marlins.

Stan M

Saw The Sporting News evaluation rating Minor League systems and must admit that I was too optimistic at #5 or so, but feel that their rating in the high teens is also unrealistic. Our farm system is more realistically around #9 or 10.

A question:
If Hech doesn't improve in his pitch selection this Spring or early in the year, should the team move Furcal to SS with Solano and/or Lucas at 2B while Hech gets some needed ABs in AAA ball. If Furcal can still hack it at SS, the team would improve offensively and Hech's future might be brighter in the long run.

Eddie S

If Marmol comes in the 9th inning of a game with the Marlins winning 6-0, there is a strong possiblity you may have to bring in Cisek to close so the Marlins will win 6-4. Here we go Jorge Julio all over again. WHY NOT GIVE MARMOL A MINOR LEAGUE CONTRACT INSTEAD OF GUARENTEEING HIM OVER 1 MILLION DOLLARS. THE MARLINS WANTED AN EXPERINECED VETERAN RELIEF PITCHER. THEY GOT AN EXPERIENCED PITCHER THAT CONSISTENTLY WALKS ALMOST 1 BATTER AN INNING.THE MARLINS COULD NOT HAVE DONE WORSE!!!!!!

Lou Vales

Tommy Hutton will now describe Marmol as if he is a combo Fingers, Gossage, Sutter, Smith and Rivera.

Stan M

Lou, that's not fair. Hutton is known to criticize hometown players much more than most announcers. Let's see how he handles Marmol before excoriating him.

Lou Vales

Stan, The sun rises in the East. Light travel at 186,000 a second and John Jay was the first Chief Justice. I want to test and see if anything I write will pass your filter. I have had your back and will continue to read your tomes with pleasure. I haven't excoriated anyone in quite some time. You have a nice day.

Stan M

I agree, Lou. But Tommy will frequently point out a bad play by a Marlin player. And far more than most other announcers. Sad say when Ralph Kiner died. He did have a long and rewarding life. Many tributes all over the net. Young people would have no idea that he was once considered one of America's most eligible bachelors. For a while he dated Janet Leigh of movie Psycho fame among several other starlets. When he married Nancy Chaffee it was front page news. I read both of his books and they were terrific reads. The man was a consummate storyteller.

Juan Yanes


Lou Vales

Clark, I know there are only about 11 that give a crap but aren't we worthy of a new story on the cusp of Spring Training? I am not saying to make up a free agent acquisition but there MUST be something worthy of a paragraph. We will take it from there.


No news about the Marlins is good news. Just look at the propaganda fluff on their MLB website if you need comic relief.


Not hearing anything new about the Marlins is good as usually any news is laughable or Samson opening his sphincter to make an another obnoxious comment. If you want Marlins comic relief go to their MLB website and read the propaganda rubbish there.

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