Roenicke, Marcum spoke after season

Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said he’d offered words of encouragement to starter Shaun Marcum since the end of the season. Marcum surrendered 49 hits and 34 earned runs over 34 innings spanning his final seven starts including the postseason. He put the Brewers in a 4-0, first-inning hole in Game 6 of the NLCS, a loss that ended Milwaukee’s season.

Roenicke texted Marcum that night and said he wanted to talk further. They did so after Roenicke made it home to Southern California.

“We don’t get where we were if we don’t have our starting pitching, and we were a huge part of that,” Roenicke said. “When you have that type of game, I know what you’re thinking when you leave. It was a bad way to end the season for him. I didn’t want to leave it that way.”

Roenicke attributed Marcum’s swoon to a variety of factors, including the fact he topped 200 innings for the first time. But it also may have simply been a slump, just like hitters endure, Roenicke argued.

“It’s hard to say what it was,” he said. “It could have been out of gas. Could have been just mentally. You know, pitchers are like hitters. They go through some confidence issues. They go through hot streaks. You go through cold streaks you just like a hitter does. At the end of the year I think he was in a streak where he wasn’t pitching well. His confidence wasn’t as good.

“He was still well prepared, like he always is, and I would have loved to have seen him get through that first inning, because I really still felt really good about him. I think he’s a great competitor. And I really like him. I think he helps your team win.”

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