No deal: Cubs pull plug on Carlos Marmol for Dan Haren swap
BY GORDON WITTENMYER firstname.lastname@example.org November 2, 2012 6:55PM
Cubs closer Carlos Marmol celebrates after Chase Utley flied out to left to end the game. | H. Rumph Jr~AP
Updated: December 4, 2012 6:18AM
The Cubs worked Friday night on getting a significant jump on filling their off-season needs but eventually pulled the plug on a would-be trade of closer Carlos Marmol to the Los Angeles Angels for starting pitcher Dan Haren.
An agreement was close enough that Marmol was asked to waive his limited no-trade rights and consented to being traded to the Angels, according to a source. And Marmol told multiple news outlets he had been traded, saying during a radio interview in the Dominican Republic: ‘‘I don’t know whether to feel happy or sad, because I leave a team that helped me to have a career in the majors.’’
But late Friday night, a Cubs source said the would-be deal was off: ‘‘There is no deal. There won’t be a deal.’’
It was not immediately clear what caused the trade to fall through.
One report suggested money may have been the hang-up.
The Angels declined Haren’s $15.5 million option for 2013 at Friday’s 11 p.m. deadline making him a free agent. They had shopped him for much of the week.
Because of the $3.5 million buyout clause on the option, that sunk cost was considered in play as a cash offset for any club trading for Haren.
But Marmol is due $9.8 million in 2013, the final season of a three-year, $20 million deal, which wouldn’t seem to require a cash offset from the Angels.
A potentially more significant issue with Haren, 32, is the high mileage on his right arm as he comes off the first season in which he spent time on the disabled list.
Haren pitched at least 216 innings for seven consecutive seasons before being plagued by lower-back tightness in the first half and eventually going on the DL in July.
When he came back his once-94-mph fastball was more often in the upper-80s and he relied more on location than power for what success he had.
For the Cubs’ rent-a-pitcher needs in a deal like this, Haren would have to be considered healthy and strong enough to have a good chance at pitching well for at least three or four months into next season.
The Cubs have been transparent about their plans to acquire players this winter on short-term, ‘‘value’’ deals that make them tradeable for prospects at the trade deadline if the team’s out of contention again.
Haren, a three-time All-Star, had his worst season in 2012, going 12-13 with a 4.33 ERA in 30 starts for the Angels.
Cubs front office officials wouldn’t comment on the deal Friday.
The Cubs have two openings in a 2013 opening rotation that otherwise includes Matt Garza, Jeff Samardzija and Travis Wood.
As reports of the pending trade swirled on the web Friday night, Garza sent out multiple tweets in support of the deal.
Said one: ``Gonna be tough to replace a closer like Marmol, for sure! But adding another horse to the stable gives us innings we sorely need!’’
Said another: ``Feeling great! Can’t wait for February! Moves like these only make you want to turn up the dials in training! Striving for our ring cub fans.’’