On Ron Roenicke And Postseason Legacies

There's not going to be a Frosty Mug today. It will return tomorrow to help get ready for Game 6, but today I could really use a day away from baseball to recharge and refocus. I'm sure many of you feel the same way. Before I go, though, here's the thought that keeps running through my head.

Like most of you, I'm strongly hoping the Brewers can find a way to win Game 6 tomorrow and extend this series to put Yovani Gallardo back on the mound Monday. But, also like many of you, I'm reluctant to put too much faith in Shaun Marcum's ability to do it.

We've talked a lot about Marcum over the last couple of weeks. Earlier this week Jordan had a look at what's changed over the last couple of months as he's gone from one of this team's most effective pitchers to a guy who isn't fooling anyone. For the Brewers to have a chance to win tomorrow, they're going to need Marcum to reverse the trend.

The decision to trot Marcum out there has been widely unpopular. The media has spent roughly half the week asking Ron Roenicke if he's considering changing his mind. If Marcum comes out and has a solid outing tomorrow, then Roenicke will get to say "I told you so." But if he doesn't, we're going to spend an awful lot of time this winter discussing the demise of the 2011 Brewers and the blood on the manager's hands.

Even before taking the mound tomorrow, Shaun Marcum is having a historically bad postseason. He's the only pitcher in franchise history to post an ERA over 10 in more than five playoff innings. If he has a solid outing, then he'll get a good performance to cover for some of his struggles this October like Randy Wolf did. But if he struggles again tomorrow, he's going to cement a place alongside the likes of Jeff Suppan on the list of memorably terrible postseason performances. That's a pretty heavy burden to bear.

Similarly, if the Brewers lose the series (and especially if they lose it tomorrow), a lot of the blame is going to be placed on Ron Roenicke. He's made some decisions this October that have worked, like inserting Jerry Hairston Jr at third base and letting Randy Wolf start again, but he also started Mark Kotsay in back-to-back games, inserted Casey McGehee as a pinch hitter with the game on the line in Game 3 and let a clearly struggling starting pitcher make two NLCS starts.

There's a strong possibility that tomorrow is going to be a defining moment in the careers of these two men, and not in a good way. If Marcum doesn't pitch well and the Brewers lose, this game is going to end up near the top of the list of biggest failures in Brewer franchise history.

For their sakes and for all of ours, I hope that's not what happens.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Brew Crew Ball

You must be a member of Brew Crew Ball to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Brew Crew Ball. You should read them.

Join Brew Crew Ball

You must be a member of Brew Crew Ball to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Brew Crew Ball. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker