Marshall makes return to Wrigley as opponent

Marshall makes return to Wrigley as opponent

Marshall makes return to Wrigley as opponent
CHICAGO -- After six seasons as a Wrigley Field fan favorite, Reds reliever Sean Marshall made his first trip to the venerable ballpark as a visiting player on Friday.

Marshall, a key component of the Cubs' bullpen the last couple of years, was dealt to Cincinnati in the offseason for a package of prospects, including Travis Wood, Ronald Torreyes and Dave Sappelt.

One of the first things Marshall noticed was the cozier confines of Wrigley Field's visiting clubhouse, which is smaller than many high school locker rooms.

"It's definitely smaller over here," Marshall said. "First time I've been on the visiting side. It's still nice."

A roomier home park has been one of the perks of joining the Reds.

"Amenities-wise, it's a little different," Marshall said. "It's pretty nice to have a big locker room and a nice weight room. It's stuff I didn't get a chance to experience during my time over here."

After spending his first nine professional seasons with the Cubs organization, Marshall is still getting used to the change. It has helped that the Reds are guided by Dusty Baker, who was Marshall's first manager when he broke in with the Cubs.

"There are some coaches here that were here when I first [came up] and gave me a chance," Marshall said. "I'll always be grateful for that. Dusty has been good. As a player's manager, he treats his guys really good, just like he did here."

While Marshall picked up occasional save opportunities during his time in Chicago, he's taken over as the Reds' full-time closer in the wake of the season-ending injury to Ryan Madson. His numbers have remained strong in the role, as he's converted both of his save chances and posted a 2.08 ERA over 4 1/3 innings.

"Closing is good," Marshall said. "I've only had a couple of chances so far. It's been fun. It's the same game. I still have to make my pitches. There is a little bit more crowd energy, but I've always been comfortable whether or not how many people are watching."

-- Bradford Doolittle