A host of National League pitchers turned in exceptional relief seasons in 2010. In the end, we could only pick three for our ballot for the senior circuit’s Baseball Bloggers Alliance Goose Gossage Award. And wouldn’t you know, it had to be a Cub.
We put Carlos Marmol first on our ballot based on the quality and quantity of his relief work this year. The lanky righty with a herky-jerky delivery was 11th in the league in expected FIP and fifth in batters faced. And if the Cubs stank this year, it wasn’t because of Marmol, who was fourth in the league in win-probability added.
The players who rounded out our ballot were surprises. Brian Wilson, whose season continues into the playoffs, was nearly as dominant as Marmol, ranking second in WPA, 12th in batters faced and 14th in xFIP. And Matt Belisle faced the second-most batters in relief in the majors with 365 over an old-school-like 92 innings and outranked contenders like Heath Bell, Jonny Venters and Hong-Chih Kuo in xFIP.