PHILADELPHIA -- Cubs closer Carlos Marmol's work on Sunday has drawn plenty of attention, but there were mitigating factors to his struggles.
A pair of walks, along with an infield single, left Marmol in a bases-loaded, two-out situation with the Cubs holding a 5-0 lead. After a walk scored the Phillies' only run, Marmol got Shane Victorino to ground out and end the game. Still, that didn't ease the nerves of the Cubs' fan base.
That said, manager Dale Sveum understood the situation in which Marmol found himself, in a game where he couldn't register a save.
"He has to understand about the fastball," Sveum said. "He's thrown 62 fastballs this year and given up one hit on it. He can't be afraid to throw that thing. He's not a guy that's going to paint corners, but you have to know you don't have to go to the slider all of the time. It's not getting hit and not a lot of contact when it's in the zone. You need to have confidence in it.
"He needs to pitch more. Most max-effort guys need to. I think the history of closers in non-save situations is not very good."