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Gregg Is Cubs' Closer

The Tampa Tribune
Published:   |   Updated: March 22, 2013 at 12:36 PM
MESA, Ariz. -

Chicago Cubs manager Lou Piniella picked Kevin Gregg to be the team's closer heading into the season.

Gregg beat out Carlos Marmol, the Cubs' setup man last year. Going into Sunday, Gregg hadn't given up a run all spring.

The Cubs obtained the 30-year-old Gregg during the offseason in a trade with Florida. Last season, he saved 29 games for the Marlins.

The right-hander also had 32 saves in 2007 and has 62 for his career.

Marmol entered Sunday with a 1-1 record and 4.50 ERA in spring training. He has hit five batters with pitches.

Marmol returns to his role of setup man to begin the season.

MARINERS: Brandon Morrow confirmed Sunday what Manager Don Wakamatsu announced earlier - Morrow will head back to the bullpen for the start of the season. This won't be a temporary move to build arm strength after he missed much of spring training with forearm stiffness.

Also on Sunday, the Mariners optioned catcher Jeff Clement to Triple-A Tacoma, released reliever Tyler Walker, and acquired utility player Chris Burke from the Padres for cash.

METS: Citi Field opened its shiny steel gates for a big test run, hosting a wide-eyed crowd that got its first glimpse of the New York Mets' new home.

While the Mets finish up spring training in Florida, 22,397 fans - many with cameras in hand - ignored the wet and chilly weather Sunday to explore the new stadium and watch Georgetown use a four-run seventh inning to beat St. John's 6-4 in a college baseball game.

ORIOLES: Although catcher Matt Wieters was assigned to Baltimore's minor-league camp Sunday, it probably won't be long before the team's prized prospect becomes a fixture in the Orioles' starting lineup.

RANGERS: Josh Hamilton homered in consecutive at-bats and drove in five runs to help Texas beat the Angels 13-7 on Sunday.

Hamilton's first-inning homer to left-center put the Rangers ahead 2-0 and his three-run shot to right-center, his fifth of the spring, capped a five-run second as Texas opened a 7-0 lead.

"I've been waiting for the wheels to stop spinning in my head and to get up there and react," Hamilton said. "It's been a gradual thing. Some days I'm too intense, some days I'm too relaxed."

TIGERS: Detroit placed left-handed pitcher Dontrelle Willis on the 15-day disabled list with an anxiety disorder and put reliever Joel Zumaya on the list (sore right shoulder).

Willis said he has been feeling well on and off the mound.

"I have no idea, but the doctors didn't like what they saw in the blood," Willis said. "This is not something where I'm too amped up and I don't know where I'm at, and I'm running sprints up and down the parking lot."

GM Dave Dombrowski said he could not provide details about Willis' medical condition because of privacy regulations.

YANKEES: Manager Joe Girardi said Brett Gardner beat out Melky Cabrera for the starting center field spot on Opening Day.

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