Did you know that Carlos Zambrano’s walk yesterday was the team’s first in 21 innings? If I didn’t know better, I’d call that “embarrassing.”
The Chicago media took a decidedly negative approach to covering Zambrano’s comments. Gordon Wittenmyer called the comments a “premeditated rant” from “a guy whose career already has been marked by divisive outbursts.” Paul Sullivan focused almost exclusively on Zambrano “throwing his closer under the bus.”
David Haugh of the Tribune took the cake, though. Haugh delivered a rant of his own, calling for Jim Hendry to suspend Zambrano until he could be traded. Yes, there’s a brilliant approach to maximizing trade value – I think we’ve danced that dance before. Haugh went so far as to call Jim Hendry, who is busily preparing for tomorrow’s Draft, at 9:30 last night to bait the GM into making negative comments about Zambrano before Hendry had even talked to Mike Quade, let alone Zambrano.
Gene Wojciechowski said a lot of the same stuff as Haugh, calling Zambrano’s comments a “meltdown,” calling a “hypocrite” and a “crummy teammate.”
Bruce Miles offered the only redeeming comments about Zambrano, saying that Zambrano is “left looking like the bad guy again because he told the truth about a bad team.”
Koyie Hill offered a defense of Zambrano and his comments, and then added: “At some point, you just get tired of saying, ‘All we need to do is play hard and keep playing hard,’ until eventually you just say something else.” Indeed. It’s called not being a robot.
I get that Zambrano has been a problematic teammate for many of his 10 years with the Cubs. But the guy has been a model citizen for a year now, and while that may not be enough to earn the benefit of the doubt, it’s enough to earn the benefit of our ears. Just listen to what the guy is saying before trying to turn it into another burn-Carlos-fest.
If you want to listen to Z’s comments yourself, here they are. He sounds pretty calm and collected to me:
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