Former Major League right-hander Shaun Marcum has joined the coaching staff at Northwestern Oklahoma State University, the school previously announced. The move effectively brings to a close the playing career of Marcum, who expressed excitement about the opportunity to begin sharing his knowledge with a younger generation.
“I played long enough and now I feel like it’s time for me to see if I can help these kids reach their goals of playing professionally and winning a National Championship,” Marcum said at the time of the announcement. “Getting to be on Coach [Sam] Carel’s staff was something I couldn’t pass up. I’m really excited and looking forward to being a part of the NWOSU baseball program.” Carel, a former college teammate of Marcum from the pair’s days at Missouri State University, added: “Shaun’s playing experience at the Major League level speaks for itself, and his knowledge will help this program continue to advance the process forward. Personally, I am just as excited to have an individual who I shared a dugout with at Missouri State University, and who I would consider to be one of the best collegiate competitors I had ever seen come out of a Keith Guttin program. Shaun’s tenacity has always been non-negotiable, and that tenacity will perpetuate itself throughout our club immediately. This program got better today.”
The upcoming season will be Marcum’s first full year of coaching, as he spent much of the 2015 campaign with the Indians organization, splitting the year between Triple-A and the Majors. While Marcum logged a 5.40 ERA in 35 Major League innings last year, he worked to a 3.26 ERA in 88 1/3 minor league innings in his final professional season. Though he struggled in his final Major League stint, Marcum’s career will come to a close with very solid numbers: a 61-48 record, a 3.93 ERA, 7.3 K/9, 2.7 BB/9 and a 38.2 percent ground-ball rate across 1030 Major League innings spent with the Blue Jays, Brewers, Mets and Indians.
Marcum’s career numbers are solid, to be sure, though injuries certainly slowed his production. His 2007 season ended with surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his knee and would undergo Tommy John surgery a year later at the end of the ’08 campaign, causing him to miss the entirety of the 2009 season. Further elbow issues, a pinched nerve in his neck and, lastly, thoracic outlet syndrome cost Marcum significant time later in his career. While those injuries limited his ability to take the field, the former third-round pick nonetheless amassed a wealth of knowledge and experience from the time he was drafted in 2003 through his playing career’s end in 2015 — and the players he coaches now stand to benefit from those experiences. We at MLBTR wish Marcum the best of luck in the next phase of his baseball career.