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Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Braves have their own Marmol

Carroll Rogers on the (very young) man who is slated to replace Billy Wagner:

The most impressive thing about Kimbrel is missing from the above ... In those (almost) 21 innings, he struck out 40 hitters. Granted, he also walked 16 of them. Thanks to all those walks, Kimbrel's strikeout-to-walk ratio was just 2.5, which is fine but less than brilliant. He didn't give up a single home run, which is brilliant (if obviously unsustainable over the long haul). Oddly, in the minors his strikeout rate wasn't quite as high, but neither was his walk rate, making for a K/W ratio practically the same as in the majors. We should probably just assume that this is who he is, with the caveat that as he matures his command should improve at least a little.

There may be a few bumps along the way. But Carlos Marmol is the same sort of pitcher, and he's got a 2.54 ERA over the past four seasons. If Fredi Gonzalez can live with the occasional ugly outing, Kimbrel should do perfectly well as the Braves' closer.