2008 Season Recap: Sean Marshall
Let's go back to eight years ago, shall we? It wasn't all that long ago. Here are your top seven starters for Your 2000 Chicago Cubs (Pitcher, GS, ERA, W, L)
Jon Lieber 35 4.41 12 11
Kevin Tapani 30 5.01 8 12
Kerry Wood 23 4.80 8 7
Scott Downs 18 5.17 4 3
Ruben Quevedo 21 7.47 3 10
Ismael Valdez 12 5.37 2 4
Andrew Lorraine 8 6.47 1 2
Mr. Lieber. A four-point-four-one earned run average. Eleven losses. Congratulations, Mr. Lieber. You are at the top of your pledge class!
Mr. Wood. Four-point-eight-oh. A fine example, you set!
Mr. Quevedo. Zero-Point-Zero.
It really is a shame we couldn't trade Sean Marshall to 2000. With his lifetime 4.62 ERA, he could step right in there and anchor this staff.
Sean did the dirty work this year. A couple of spot starts, a few appearences as the LOOGY, but mostly long relief. He did what was asked, without complaint, and even at the risk of his marketability. When he got the chance to start a few games, he wasn't really built up to last very long. And when LOOGY situations came up, he wasn't really able to be applied in these situations because he is not used to the LOOGY life of getting warm in three minutes, going out there, getting his guy, and being able to do it the next day.
Now, there's a reason why Sean became this year's buttmonkey. His upside as a starter is not high enough, so his inclusion in the rotation was not a priority. Mr. Marshall is in limbo with us right now. Which is why his name is included in every trade rumor that comes up. The pinnacle of his career was the brief portion of 2006 when he was surgically attached to Greg Maddux' back. Sean appears to be quite receptive to instruction; at the same time, he is also quite reliant on it.
He could probably grow into a 12-13 game winner on a team with the luxury of personal growth. If he had a patient manager and a dynamic pitching coach who was willing to take him on as a pet project. A couple of years of that, and then maybe like baby bird, he would eventually 'fly' on his own, and I could absolutely see him having a Jamie Moyer-esque career. He is durable, smart, likable, and in the right situation, Sean Marshall would be an asset.
Of course, we don't have a patient manager, a dynamic pitching coach, or the luxury of time to wait for him to come around. I like him, but like Matt Murton, Micah Hofpauir, and Sean Gallagher, he is better off finding a new home.