You can still discuss the wilds of the VWR in the post below, but for anyone who wants to change the subject, let's talk closers. Who's going to get that coffee and close for the Cubs this year?
Bruce Miles sums up yesterday's live BP sessions involving Kerry Wood, Bob Howry and Carlos Marmol, the three candidates. So far, Lou Piniella is noncommital:
"Look, whether, it's Kerry, whether it's Howry, whether it's Marmol, these guys are all capable of doing it," Piniella said. "We're going to try to do what's best for the team, what's best for the individual. I know Bob's had trouble early (in regular seasons), so let's see how he comes out of spring training throwing the ball."
Sounds reasonable to me. But in the Sun-Times, Gordon Wittenmyer says the math adds up to Marmol:
Maybe. Greg Couch agrees, and though I'm not sure I agree with him at this point in February, he does at least make a reasonable argument for his position. But then he trots out the old "let's not depend on Kerry Wood" argument:
Sigh. Yeah, I know. We've all felt this way at times. But maybe now is different, Greg. And Paul Sullivan has a cogent quote from Wood summing this all up:
Amen. Let's see how it plays out starting next Thursday. Finally, don't be surprised to see these three pitching in the fourth or fifth inning in the early spring games. Why? Because those are the innings, early on, when you are guaranteed to be facing major league hitters. In the ninth, at least in the first week or two of the spring, guys wearing #93 from the minor league camp will be hitting, and that's not the situations you'd want your closer to be facing.