Marmol attended Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando, Florida. He was drafted by the Pirates in the 31st round of the 2004 MLB draft.
Oliver did not sign with the Pirates and attended the College of Charleston, where he played college baseball for the College of Charleston Cougars. He batted .327 in three seasons with the Cougars, and was drafted by the Cardinals in the sixth round of the 2007 MLB draft, upon the urging of then-scout Mike Shildt.
- Marmol was born and raised in Florida, with time also spent in the Dominican Republic and speaks fluent Spanish.
- Oliver is married to Amber Marmol. They have one daughter together.
Marmol has two brothers who are pastors. Marmol and his wife have taken short-term missions to orphanages in Guatemala and Nicaragua.
Oliver is a Christian.
Marmol's journey with the Cardinals started all the way back in 2007, and it was a decision to put his faith and trust in God that led him there.
A star infielder at the College of Charleston, Marmol was getting a lot of buzz as a prospect for the 2007 MLB Draft, and his agent strongly encouraged him to play in the Cape Cod League to improve his draft stock. Meanwhile, a guy who was discipling him asked him to pray about attending the Summer Beach Project, an eight-week outreach and discipleship retreat for college-aged students, instead of playing in the Cape Cod League.
At first, Marmol scoffed at it, telling his mentor that he’d pray about it, all the while knowing he was definitely playing in the Cape Cod League that summer. A week later when his mentor came back to him, he told him he never did pray about it because he was sure what he was doing — playing in the Cape Cod League. So he was challenged once more: Take the night to pray about it, and if it’s a no, it’s a no. But at least genuinely pray about it.
“I remember walking to campus . . . and I started praying about it, and just started tearing up,” he said while on the “Table Forty Podcast.”
He said he heard God asking if he was going to trust Him or take things into his own hands.
“I called my agent and I was like, ‘Hey, I’m not going to the Cape, I’m going to this Christian retreat,’ and he let me have it,” Marmol said.
Marmol was told he could pretty much kiss his chances of being drafted in the first 10 rounds goodbye.
Yet, the Cardinals drafted him in the sixth round of the 2007 draft. He has since spent his entire professional baseball career, both as a player and a coach, in the Cardinals organization.
“This is one of those opportunities where I’m going to trust God,” Marmol recalled. “I’m going to go to this Christian retreat, and then I’ll see what happens. It worked out where I went in the first 10 rounds and never had to play in the Cape. I went to a good organization. It worked out really well, but it was one of the first times where I had to really be like, ‘I’m going to not take this into my own hands and I’m going to trust God with this.’”
As for Marmol’s relationship with God, it was his brother Ronnie’s decision to attend a Christian conference years ago that eventually led Marmol to accepting Christ. They were both living at home in Orlando, where the conference happened to be, and Ronnie would come home after each night of the conference and share with Oliver what he learned that day. Oli couldn’t help but notice the change in his brother, who for years struggled with drugs and other things.
“I remember just sitting up at night and listening to him talk to me,” Marmol said, “and it started to make sense as far as like, ‘Man, there’s something I’ve been searching for and never really knew what it was.’”
Later that night, Oliver’s oldest brother, Will, came home late, drunk.
“It was this clear distinction in the moment of like, ‘Here’s one brother talking about discipleship and Christ and just the joy that you find in this, and then here’s my other brother who’s laid out from a crazy night out of who knows what,'” Marmol said. “It was just very, like, I’m choosing this — I’m choosing Christ over this.”
Both brothers later became pastors.
“That, for me, was when I prayed to receive Christ and started attending a Bible study at the high school.
Marmol said his faith remains at the center of all he does, and now more than a decade later, he’s just as content with his decision not to play and instead get into coaching.
“I always knew I wanted to have influence over a group of guys, and the best opportunity to do that would be being on a staff or just being a coach,” he said on the podcast. “I’ve always been passionate about coaching. I enjoyed playing, but I’m probably more passionate about coaching than I was playing.” (Cole Claybourn - SportsPectrum - 10/25/2021)
CHASING THE AMERICAN DREAM
June 6, 2022: Orlando, Fla., is known more for its theme parks than its MLB ties, but it served as a perfect place and a U.S. reboot for Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol and his tight-knit family.
After Hurricane Andrew destroyed the family home in 1992, they returned to their native Dominican Republic. Two years later, the Marmols picked Orlando as the spot where they would chase the American dream a second time. Father, William, and mother, Kuky, wanted their four sons—Will, Ronny, Erick and Oliver—to get an education while playing baseball, and in America.
Little did they know at the time, but the baby of the family, "Oli," would be the most composed, serious minded and laser-focused member of the family despite being the youngest son. Success at a big-time level wasn't just a possibility for him; instead, the family always knew that Oli's purposeful drive and intentional actions put him on a collision course for greatness.
"This is the standard he set since he was a kid. He operated at a maturity level we didn't always understand, but we were fans of it," said Will, Oliver's older brother by nine years and now a pastor at Genesis Church Orlando. "We were always like, 'We're older and we're supposed to take care of you!' But Oli never needed that. He laid the groundwork of how he was going to be. The three older brothers, we were his cheerleaders and we had front row seats and popcorn to his movie, and we wanted to see what he would do. He's never gone away from that demeanor."
Fast-forward to today, and even though Marmol is MLB's youngest manager at 35, he is comfortable in his own skin and competent in leading men older than him—namely superstars Albert Pujols (42), Adam Wainwright (40) and Yadier Molina (39).
Marmol has the Cardinals sitting at a season-best nine games over .500, tied in the loss column with the Brewers atop the NL Central and winners of 12 of 17 games. Many Cardinals have been quick to credit the club's success to Marmol's ability to push the right buttons—whether it's been handling of the team's veteran core, his trust in the franchise's nine players who have made MLB debuts or his very blunt honesty.
"Much of his success is because of how he was raised and knowing not to ever take anything for granted," said Pujols. "Oli's parents sacrificed a lot to give him the opportunities he's had. He's an example and a testimony for somebody who doesn't think they can get to a certain level; Oli's somebody who's doing it."
With the Cardinals opening a three-game set vs. the Rays, a group of 35-or-so family and friends will be at Tropicana Field to support Marmol. Marmol learned the value of hard work, discipline and adaptability from a father and mother who worked to provide for him and his brothers. As a 140-pound sophomore at Orlando's Dr. Phillips High School, Marmol once homered off Zack Greinke. His home base in Orlando expanded his horizons and taught him how to deal with people from different cultures.
"Orlando was so important to me because that's where I met my wife Amber, and we started dating my junior year of high school," Marmol said. "I loved so much about being there, but the school I went to had so much diversity and it was great. There were so many kids from different places, and that was unbelievable to me. I was exposed to so many different cultures, backgrounds and viewpoints and it was good for me."
What also helped Marmol was seeing parents and family members serve as role models and people who made sacrifices so he could succeed. A reason he's always been comfortable around people older than him, Marmol said, was because his inner circle was always elders who doubled as mentors. At the forefront was his father, William.
"My parents always had the mindset that they would do everything possible to allow my brothers to have success," Marmol said. "My dad had a company in the D.R., and we were very comfortable. It's where they're from and where they're comfortable. But my parents really wanted us to get an education. They picked everything up and moved us to Florida so my brother could go to College of Charleston and play baseball.
"That came at the expense of my dad having to learn the language, work trade jobs, and do anything he could to make a living—which was totally different than what he was doing in the D.R.," Marmol added. "My dad knew it would be a grind, but to them it was 100% worth allowing us to have success."
A light-hitting infielder, Marmol and others in the Cardinals' organization quickly saw that his future in baseball would be in leading others instead of playing. By 2011, he was a Gulf Coast League hitting coach and a manager a season later. He progressed quickly through the system and after five years Marmol made it to the MLB level with the Cardinals.
When the organization moved on from Mike Shildt in October 2021, Marmol wasn't necessarily the obvious choice to be the team's next manager, but president of baseball operations John Mozeliak hired Marmol.
Rumors of Marmol's hiring by the Cardinals began to circulate throughout the church congregation in Orlando, but the family didn't consider the promotion official until they heard from Oli, who put in a group FaceTime call on Oct. 25, 2021.
"He asked if I was in a place where I could talk and I told him I was driving, and he said, 'Pull over!'" Will recalled. "He FaceTimed my parents and us brothers and we cried together. He said he wasn't going to cry and, if he told you he didn't, he definitely cried. Oh my gosh, did he cry! He embraced the moment with humility, but also shared it. That was such a win for us as a family. We had always said that if one of us wins, we all win."
The true joy of being a big league manager, Marmol said, is representing a family that came to Orlando while chasing the American dream. He carries the torch for others who sacrificed so he could succeed.
"They love [him managing], and I love it for the family," Marmol said. "We experience it together. Being with the Cardinals and sitting in this seat is amazing. It's special and it's a win for my wife Amber and myself, but my whole family gets to experience this journey and where it has led us." (J Denton - MLB.com - June 6, 2022)
|Birth City:||Orlando, FL|
|Draft:||Cardinals #6 - 2007 - Out of College of Charleston (SC)|
|2007||-||2010: Cards Org|
POST-PLAYING CAREER POSITIONS
2011: Marmol became the hitting coach of the Gulf Coast Cardinals of the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League.
2012: Oliver became manager of the Johnson City Cardinals of the Rookie-level Appalachian League, and led the team to the postseason.
- 2013: Marmol managed the State College Spikes of the New York-Penn League.
2014: Oliver returned to State College and won the league's championship.
2015-2016: He was promoted and managed Palm Beach for two seasons.
2017-2018: The Cardinals named Marmol their first base coach.
2019: The Cardinals shifted Marmol to bench coach.
Oct 25, 2021: He was promoted to manager of the Cardinals. Oliver became the 51st manager in Cardinals history.
"Oli understands what we've been trying to do, what we need to do, what we want to do in the future," Cards president of baseball operations, John Mozeliak said. "From a leadership standpoint, Oli was the right man for the job at this time."
Marmol relates, "I've seen the inner workings of what it entails as a right-hand man for the previous manager. I have a sense for what the day-to-day of this position looks like. Obviously there are more media responsibilities and things like that nature." (Stan McNeal - Cardinals Magazine - Jan. 2022)