The Cubs will use a "closer by committee" formula to replace the struggling Carlos Marmol, who was told Friday he had lost the closer job. Left-hander James Russell, the only lefty in the bullpen, and right-hander Rafael Dolis are likely to close, with situations and matchups dictating whom manager Dale Sveum summons. On Friday, it was Dolis, who finished a 5-4 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers for Paul Maholm (3-2). "We're just going to play it by ear and whatever matchups come up in the ninth, that will be who I use," he said. The situation can't help but shine a spotlight on the offseason decision to trade versatile lefty Sean Marshall, who is closing for the Cincinnati Reds after they lost closer Ryan Madson to injury. Russell has been the most successful reliever this season. He hadn't allowed a run in 72/3 innings before giving up one run in two-thirds of an inning Friday. The son of former major-league pitcher Jeff Russell might have the stuff and the mentality to close. "I like to think closing will be a little screwy, and he passed that down to me," Russell joked about his father. "If you're a baseball player, you're a little messed up." Sveum all but admitted the long-term answer still might be Marmol, unless the team makes a personnel change or has dramatic success with Marmol's replacements.
Carlos Marmol out of closer role as Dale Sveum turns to committee
Chicago Sun-Times | May 5