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Carlos Marmol regains belief role for Cubs


Red Sox at Cubs

The facts: 7, ESPN, 720-AM.

The pitchers: Franklin Morales (0-1, 3.04 ERA) vs. Paul Maholm (4-5, 4.91).

Updated: July 18, 2012 6:49AM

If Carlos Marmol can be effective again as the Cubs’ closer, it will have a ripple effect on the bullpen.

‘‘You have a guy who’s done it before, and you get him on track again to throw strikes; that’s all you want,’’ manager Dale Sveum said.

In the process, James Russell, Shawn Camp and Casey Coleman can return to the setup roles they’re more suited for, Sveum said.

On Friday, Marmol earned his first save since May 2 even though he loaded the bases before getting a force out to end the game.

Sveum said Marmol looked confident in his previous appearance, Tuesday against the Detroit Tigers.

‘‘I told [pitching coach Chris] Bosio it was the first time he came to the mound with that look of ‘Let’s go,’ and you could see the correlation when he was throwing,’’ Sveum said.


The Cubs announced the signing of 15 of their draft picks, including high school right-hander Paul Blackburn, 18. The 56th overall pick signed for $911,700, according to Baseball America.

The team’s sixth selection, Coastal Carolina pitcher Josh Conway, signed for $280,000, and second selection Pierce Johnson, a right-hander from Missouri State, announced on Twitter that he also signed. The Cubs wouldn’t confirm either signing.

Top pick Albert Almora, a high school outfielder, has yet to sign.

Mesa mess

A plan to have the Cubs share their new spring-training facility in Mesa, Ariz., with Arizona State is in jeopardy.

University officials accused the team of being ‘‘erratic’’ and ‘‘not people of their word,’’ according to reports.

The Arizona Republic reported that ASU president Michael Crow sent Mesa Mayor Scott Smith what was described as ‘‘a scathing email’’ last week accusing Cubs management of bad faith in negotiating a plan to have the university share the complex to save the cost of replacing ASU’s Packard Stadium. Ground-breaking is scheduled for July 11.

Crow’s email said the Cubs ‘‘pursued us, and we have operated in good faith since then. We have found ourselves dealing with a highly erratic Cubs organization, and as of today, we have been all but told that they want us out of the deal.’’

Smith reportedly told Crow the city also has been frustrated with the Cubs, saying he talked to team chairman Tom Ricketts ‘‘and expressed clearly my feelings with how the Cubs have handled this process. He told me he wanted the ASU deal to go through.’’

Cubs spokesman Julian Green told the Arizona Republic, ‘‘we hope Arizona State will be part of the new spring-training facility. However, our first priority is building a world-class facility for use by the Cubs year-round. That is what the voters of Mesa approved.’’

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