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Each day that goes by without the Chicago Cubs unloading pitcher Carlos Zambrano on another team increases the chances that something that seemed almost impossible just two months ago could actually happen.

Zambrano might be in the Cubs’ rotation in 2012.

The Winter Meetings have come and gone, and the Cubs weren’t exactly fending off suitors with a broom. Indeed, the offers aren’t rolling in on the talented but temperamental – and declining – former ace.  Owed $18 million in 2012, and coming off a crappy season that saw him quit on his team in August, it’s not as if any of us expected a parade of teams looking to add an expensive headache.

But it’s been incredibly quiet. Outside of an occasional bout Ozzie Guillen mouth diarrhea, there hasn’t been so much as a whisper attaching Zambrano to a trade. It could be the tight ship run by Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer, or the lack of established sources within the new administration, but it certainly appears that teams simply don’t want Zambrano – whatever the cost.

If so, Cubs fans may have to hope – as we have so many times before – that this time, Zambrano has really changed. I’m not particularly interested in doing that hoping myself, but the inability to trade Zambrano, and the desperate need to fill out a rotation after Matt Garza and Ryan Dempster, might leave me no other choice.

For his part, Zambrano, who is pitching in the Venezuelan Winter League to rebuild both his arm strength and his image, is talking the talk about a successful return in 2012. It starts, he says, with his conditioning.

“I’m preparing like when I was a rookie,” Zambrano said of his offseason. “Climbing mountains, running on the beach, and exercising hard so that I can arrive at Spring Training in optimal shape.”

Zambrano in good shape is a start, because, as a man of his build entering his 30s, things can rocket downhill if he’s not dedicated in the offseason. Zambrano says he’s looking forward to his future in Chicago.

“I want to stay in Chicago for [the] two seasons I still have with the team,” Zambrano said. “I’m not a coward who would take the back door out of the Majors.”

Zambrano is, of course, referring to his contract year in 2012, and a vesting option in 2013, which kicks in only if he’s healthy and finishes in the top four in 2012 Cy Young voting. I’ll go out on a limb and suggest that, even if no trade is to be had, and we are forced to hope Zambrano has changed and can hold it together for 2012, it will be the last year we are forced to do so.

Zambrano could return to the mound in Venezuela today, after missing three weeks with a facial laceration (line drive to the face).

  • Kyle

    He’s a useful starting pitcher on a team in desperate need of starting pitching. They’ll find a way to put up with him.

    At least he didn’t attack a hot dog vendor.

    • jtfromthed

      Yep, as I’ve said all along, teams that need starting pitching are facing a real drought this offseason. There was almost no way that Big Z wasn’t going to be back after Theo and Co. left the door open after their meeting with him.

      I sincerely hope he shows up in the best shape of his life and performs like it’s a contract year (it is unless by some miracle he finishes the top 4 in cy young voting).

       

      • TWC

        If Zambrano was so good this year to finish within the top 4 in Cy Young voting, I can’t say that it would bother me one bit.  I’d be quite tickled, really.

  • Edwin

    During this issue, I’ve seen a lot of changing, in the way the Cubs feel about Zambrano, and in the way Zambrano feels about the Cubs. Out there, there were two sides killing each other, but I guess that’s better than twenty million. I guess what I’m trying to say, is that if Zambrano can change, and the Cubs can change, everybody can change!

    • JMack4568

      Somewhere in frigid Siberia, a bearded Zambrano stands on top of a mountain peak, screaming “Theo!”

      • ferrets_bueller

        The image that this put in my head just made me nearly spit tea out on my laptop.

  • Edwin

    Also, I prefer to think that the picture above of Zambrano isn’t one of him being angry, but one where he is practicing a new pitching drill that Larry Rothschild invented. I think he learned it from Ted Lilly.

  • JB88

    I’d like to take a step back and think about this objectively for a second. I actually think if Carlos Zambrano weren’t already a Cub, he’d be exactly the type of player Epstein and Hoyer would consider. He’s coming off a couple of down years, he is already a sunk cost, Zambrano appears to be highly motivated to earn another contract or the vesting option, and he has to be aware that he has zero market, even with the Cubs pocketing huge amounts of his remaining salary.

    With all that as a backdrop, I think it is within the realm of possibility that Zambrano comes in and has a dominant season. Zambrano the year before his extension was 16-7. Two weeks before he signed his extension, Zambrano was 14-7 with a 3.47 ERA. IMO, not coincidentally, Zambrano proceded to lose 6 games in a row and watched his ERA climb nearly a full run, before rebounding in his last 5 starts to finish the year 18-13, but with an ERA a shade under 4. From 2008 through present, Big Z has taken a steady path toward mediocrity, but was still a 3.6 WAR player as recently as 2009.

    Maybe, Zambrano is one of those all-too-familiar players who is motivated by a contract. If that is the case, Zambrano might truly be a pretty safe gamble this year. In fact, given what is available on the pitching market, currently, and given the cost of acquiring starting pitching, I think it actually makes much more sense to retain Zambrano this year than trading him for spare parts.

    • The Omnipresent Mystery Team

      Interesting.

      I tend to think that GMs have a lot of disincentive to bring in players the sports media have identified as clubhouse cancers. Those players are lightning rods for criticism and could easily turn people against the GM for bringing the malcontent in.

      And the earlier in the off-season you go out and acquire that player, the more people can criticize. “Why trade for a known troublemaker when you could have just signed players x, y, and… (well, not z in this case)?”

      We’re also waiting on the Darvish posting to settle itself out. It’s a different market if the Yankees win and want to unload Burnett, or if the Rangers win and fill their need, etc. (I’m predicting the Nationals win.)

      I think Z could still go if the Cubs really want him gone.

  • Mike Foster

    Brett, I’m concerned you don’t “get” hispanic culture. Your continual comments about dumping Carlos and now the comment about Ozzie (who owns a WS title) disturb me. Me thinks you could be broader in your outlook. With the Dominican roots the Cubs are laying you may want to consider embracing a wider standard of PASSION for the game. FWIW.

    • ferrets_bueller

      …..what?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Um… what? That might be the most wildly inaccurate, insulting, and bizarre criticism I’ve yet received around here. I don’t even know how to wrap my head around it enough to respond.

      • ferrets_bueller

        It really doesn’t have a modicum of sense…I for one am completely baffled.

      • BD

        I’m not even sure what part of your article had anything to do with the race of the player, or for that matter, race in general.

      • Andrewmoore4isu

        Brett, you didn’t vote for Obama? You’re racist!!!!!

      • DRock

        That comment by Foster better have been a “die hard” imitation with thick sarcasm otherwise it is completely out of line and unacceptable on this site.

        • Kyle L

          Where is Die Hard today? Facts and common sense are boring me right now. I need some random die hard thoughts.

      • Mike Foster

        It was the Ozzie reference on top of your string of Zambrano comments that triggered it. I’ll stand by my comment.

        • Max

          Explain to me how pointing out Ozzie Guillen’s mouth diarrhea has anything to do with race? It’s a well-known fact that Guillen likes to talk and often says things that get him in trouble–both with the media and his former team. How on earth does pointing out that fact have anything to do with race? Your comment was inappropriate and disrespectful to Brett, and if you don’t apologize, I think you’ll find a great number of us on here who will not respect a further word from you on this topic or any other on which you may care to share your thoughts.

          • SirCub

            To be fair, Mike never said anything about Brett’s comments being racist, but rather that Brett didn’t understand the hispanic culture. Not saying I agree, but there is a distinction.

        • Ol’CharlieBrown

          I think the Ozzie reference was pointing out a man who always has something to spout off at the mouth about. There is zero debate about that. Maybe you’re new to baseball, but Ozzie is known to have a lot of nasty things to say when he is upset with his team or umpires (or anyone for that matter) and doesn’t stop saying it just because someone else may not like it. Hence the reference to diarrhea. It’s nasty and doesn’t stop just because you don’t like it.

          As for the Zambrano comments, it’s simply Carlos reaping what he has sowed. Everyone would love for him to comeback and be an ace again. It’s not as if Brett is hoping he fails or that we as Cub fans hope he fails because he is a “big, mean, angry, scary Venezuelan man.” Give me a break. You sound like Milton Bradley. I’d bet Carlos is a pretty cool dude but it seems as though he is his own worst enemy. His attitude will make or break him. I once read that attitude is your best friend or your worst enemy. It’s like fire. If you can control it, it can cook for you; it can heat your house. If you can’t control it, it will burn everything around you and destroy you.

          I read an article this morning about a landlord of a duplex posted a sign at their swimming pool that stated “”Public Swimming Pool, White Only”. Now that to me is racist. What Brett has written about Ozzie or Carlos is not.

    • DRock

      Mike Foster, please tell me this is a joke…

    • Kyle

      Right idea, wrong target.

      Yes, there is a racial component to how the media and fans perceive players. I’ve laid out that case comparing Zambrano’s actions (and the media and fans’ reactions) with white Cubs’ stars before.

      But Brett isn’t one of the culprits. He’s part of the solution.

      • DRock

        Ummm…this has nothing to do with race. This has everything to do with baseball performance. Cubs haven’t given a huge contract to a white player (besides Dempster) in a long time and gotten the kind of return that Z has given us. His antics are completely unacceptable and that is why we don’t want him next year. Since when did this become about race???

        • Kyle

          Zambrano’s performance has been fine. Some fans may not understand it, but Fangraphs has him worth 14 WAR over the last four seasons, right about in line for a player with his contract.

          His “unacceptable antics” would likely be brushed aside if he were white and not an asshole on the Todd Hundley scale. Do we need to play the “Who was a bigger asshole as a player, Ron Santo or Carlos Zambrano” game again? I’m game :)

          • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

            Ok, let us step back from the race game…nothing ever goes well when the race card is thrown about like a used towel…

            • Kyle

              You can’t stick your fingers in your ears on this one.

              The media in Chicago (who are responsible for a large portion of how fans view the team) has let subtle racism color their judgment of players for a couple of decades now. Not “I hate brown people” racism. But they lazily fall into stereotypes whenever they can. The Gritty White Player. The Fiery Hispanic. The Natural Athlete Black Player.

          • DRock

            Screw Fangraphs. How has he helped the Cubs the last few years??? He has hurt them more than he has helped them. We should have traded him a few years ago when he had value. Now we are stuck with him.

            Agree with hansman. Let’s all agree to put the race card out of this website.

            • Kyle

              He’s helped the Cubs by being an above-average pitcher who is also an awesome hitter (by pitcher’s standards).

              In other words: By preventing and creating runs. The things that help you win ballgames. Not all the stupid clubhouse faux drama that the media feeds on.

              Trying to get people to put away the race card is just trying to stick your fingers in your ears and go “la la la la la” to a real problem. Brett shouldn’t be the target, he’s one of the good guys, but this is still a real issue.

              • DRock

                Good thing you are not our GM or we would have every player with severe attitude and anger problems on our team…You seem to look past all of that crap. I can’t recall any other player who fights with his teammates more than Z.

                • Kyle

                  All professional sports teams are filled with players with severe attitude and anger problems.

                  The amount that you hear about it depends on a number of factors:

                  1) Whether or not the team is winning.
                  2) Whether or not the bad players play nice with the media.
                  3) Race.
                  4) Whether or not the front office needs a scapegoat to distract you (and themselves) from their failures.

                  • DRock

                    Once again, you seem to forget when he fights with his own teammates. The last straw for me was fighting with class act, Derrick Lee.

                    • Kyle

                      Fighting with teammates is a tradition as old as baseball itself.

                      If he had beaten up a hot dog vendor and choked his own coach, we’d be calling him a beloved Cub, making documentaries about him and celebrating his HOF induction.

                      If he’d punched a teammate in practice, we’d be calling him the GOAT and building him a statue.

                      A very large percentage of athletes are assholes. Being white or being on winning teams gives you a free pass.

                    • Cubbie Blues

                      Kyle, I am white and not on a winning team. If I go and punch one of my co-workers do you think anyone will have a problem with it? Of course they would. I would probably be looking for a new job tomorrow and be arrested for assault.

                      The press doesn’t make Z an asshole Z makes Z an asshole.

    • jstraw

      You think being an asshole is cultural for Hispanics? That’s kinda racist.

      • Kyle

        I think being an asshole is cultural for athletes. The amount this bothers the media and fans is often directly proportional to the lightness of the player’s skin.

        • jstraw

          Directly inverse to the value of their contributions, perhaps.

          • Kyle

            Which doesn’t explain Zambrano, because he was and is a pretty useful baseball player.

            On the other hand, Ryan Theriot is both bad at baseball and a raging asshole. But The Riot was beloved.

            • cub in verse

              This is a good point. I can’t think of many light-skinned baseball players who have gotten a lot of grief for their public displays of assholism. In fact, many caucasian players are revered for their “outspoken” qualities and their “honesty” (this morning’s post about Luke Scott is a good example of this. Can you imagine the response to his racist political commentary if he was african american or hispanic? He would be kicked out of baseball. )

              Most of the players in this era who are labeled “trouble-makers” are dark-skinned and/or hispanic: Barry Bonds, Milton Bradley, Carlos Zambrano, Prince Fielder, etc. Most of the “model citizen” types are light-skinned and don’t speak with an accent (Ryan Braun comes to mind…)

      • DRock

        Good call, jstraw.

  • Sam

    I agree the return on Z would be minimal at best. And in a division without pujols fielder or braun (he will only be gone for pt of the yr) Z Garza and Dempster are all in a position to have good years

  • Matt

    If they don’t find a decent trade for Z (and they likely won’t) it will be up to Sveum to keep him balanced. If he and Z can create a working relationship it might actually work.

    If not, the usual dugout fireworks.

    • DRock

      I predict the usual dugout fireworks and the mound fireworks…Hope I’m wrong.

  • MoneyBoy

    Brett – Kaplan asked Woody a direct question about Z yesterday.  The answer was interesting.  Essentially it boiled down to, “We’ll see.”

    “I think it is within the realm of possibility that Zambrano comes in and has a dominant season.”  JB, I’m not sure Z has the ability to be a dominant pitcher anymore … his fastball rarely topped low 90s … more often than not, esp early in the game was high 80’s to 90.  I’ll grant you that it’s possible.

    The real downside with Z is, unlike Garza, when things don’t go well, he takes it out on (and blames) others.   Garza’s angst is self-directed.  Can that change?  Of course.   Will it?  That is the $37.5 million dollar question.

    The people he has to win over are a lot more important than any of us who frequent Brett’s blog.

  • BD

    If we do have to give him a shot on the North Side in 2012, I for one would be more than happy to see his 2013 option vest.

  • DRock

    “I want to stay in Chicago for [the] two seasons I still have with the team,” Zambrano said.

    Nooooo!!!!!

  • Michael Vazquez

    We only have Garza (in his prime, needs to get extended to mulit-year contract & IMO the ace) & Dempster so we need starting pitching and Z is still a good pitcher even though coming off a couple down years, he still a talented and good pitcher.

    Like moneyboy says, Z is not Garza (angst is self-directed, good one, moneyboy). when things don’t go well, he (Z) just goes nuts and takes it out on others. Maybe Garza should teach him a thing or two about that.

    Speaking of pitching: Gio Gonzalez & Jair Jurrjens are both pretty good pitchers but had both of their teams not ask a lot in return for them, Cubs would have probably went after them.

    • MoneyBoy

      Thank you !

  • MightyBear

    I do think Zambrano will have a good year this year.

    “Give me 25 guys in their contract year and I’ll win a pennant every time.” – Whitey “The White Rat” Herzog.

    (Sorry I didn’t mean to be racist agains Zambrano but I really don’t understand Hispanic culture)

  • Kyle

    Even in the modern age of sabermetrics, there’s still a lot of places where players can be severely over- and under-valued.

    It’s been fun the last few days to just dig in to how truly awful Prince Fielder’s baserunning is. Roughly the equivalent of knocking four home runs a year off his value.

    Another area is Zambrano’s bat. Using his total WAR, I’ve got him coming in at almost exactly $5 million/WAR over the course of his current contract, which is market value or at least in the neighborhood. But he’s constantly listed on the “Terrible contracts” woe-list of Cubs fans. Partially because of his attitude, and partially because his bat is undervalued.

    bWAR places Zambrano as +3.0 wins the last four years with his offense, and Fangraphs has it at 4.2. When he plays a full seasons, he’s a +1 win batter.

    That makes him roughly the equivalent of a pitcher who can’t hit at all with an ERA a half a run lower. I wonder how people would feel about him if his ERAs the last four years had been 3.41, 3.27, 2.83 and 4.32.

  • CubSouth

    Mike Foster, u should be like a blind man in a porcelain store….tread slowly. Brett has never ever made any racial remarks and is opposed to his readers from doing the same.
    On another subject, the Cubs, in all their “cursed” ways, it wouldn’t phase me one bit to see the Phillies rotation come down with mono for half the season and Wainwright, Lincecum, Crain, Greinke and Hudson all have their seasons cut short for a terrible blister. And big Z will end the season 5th on the Ch Young voting ballot and the winner, found out after he wins the Cy, will have tested positive for PEDs and thus, the horror will have come to surpass.

  • NL_Cubs

    What managers have stood up to ‘Z’ and held him accountable? What Cubs front office has continually pampered his ass even after the implosions (up until last years fiasco in ATL)?  This is a new administration, new sets of rules, accountability and expectations. The leash on ‘Z’ is no doubt short. Might as well give him a shot and if it works out on the field, then maybe the Cubs will end up with a few more productive ‘W’s and/or trade bait (assuming Z will waive his NTC).  We’ll likely realize the answer by the end of July.

    • MoneyBoy

      NL … PERFECT !!

      Z gets in a fight with Barrett and what does Hendry do?   Trades Barrett and gives Z a ridiculous contract loaded with goodies that further reduce the ability of a manager, player, or GM to hold him accountable.

      CSN replayed the incident at the Cell last night.   MY OH MY … DLee was one angry young man!!!  The string of obscenities … nothing I haven’t heard or said … but lordie.  But he was right.

      I also agree on the July 31st deadline – as regards both Z and Dempster.

  • ari gold

    If he returns, here’s to hoping he places 5th in Cy Young voting.

  • Dumpman

    I still think it benefits us the msot to bring Z back. Hes a sunk cost at this point. I severely doubt hes “learned” anything at this point, but thats not the main issue in my mind. Its about getting the most out of this unfortunate situation. Hes on the decline, but hey, I wouldn;t be absolutely stunned if he could come in and be effective at least. The best thing that happened to Z was new management comming in. Theo and Hoyer have no emotional attachment to Z’s antics. I think you’ll find we will march Z out there, and hope he has a good first half, ship him off at the deadline. We REALLY dont have a lot of other options at SP right now.

  • Wilbur

    I hope Z comes back, pitches to a level he evaluates out between 2.0 to 3.0 WAR and he moves on to a new team with a new contract.

    That is likely a pipe dream, so I suggest each of us drain the emotions we have about him, look past his past antics if he does the “dance of the contrite” per Theo, and divest any angst he has created.

    The Cubs need major league pitching and while we would all love to see Z gone, the rest of the league appears tohave voted and said while we’ve got our need’s, his baggage is too much. You deal with him!

    Sometimes good management (front office or field) is not taking exceptional talent and achieving a championship its taking crap and getting something better than crappy performance. I think this is where we are headed.

  • johnbres2

    1. Z can pitch.
    2. Cubs need pitching desperately.
    3. He is under contract.

    I think Cub fans are off base by taking Z’s antics so personally. People are acting a bit like he personally offended their family or their honor–like he is some dirtbag that your daughter keeps breaking up with and then you get furious when they get back together. I understand identifying with being a Cub fan (as I am a big one!), but it really is none of our business how much money he makes, or what he did in the past. He is a hot-head, that is all. He is not a bad guy. He has never been tested positive for PEDs, he is a fierce competitor, and he is probably the best hitting pitcher in the NL. I really don’t get all the hand wringing over getting him back. I want him on the team, because I want the Cubs to be able to compete this year. It is entirely possible that Z will be a model citizen this year. If it doesn’t work out, just waive him. Really, Z is the least of our problems, and he indeed is an “asset” as Theo would say.

  • die hard

    Hes left behind alot of road kill including a good guy in D. Lee. If new front office willing to risk a sacrifice of 24 for 1, then one would think Ricketts is setting stage for either a sale or bankruptcy.

    • NL_Cubs

      I can’t believe the new front office would let one player derail their methodical planning of what their vision of a winning team should look like. The Cubs are still in the very early stages of evaluating, constructing and developing their long term plans.  The ‘Z’ issue will be addressed one way or another without ‘Z’ being a liability that will get in the way of Theo’s and Hoyers’ mission.  Let the boys do their job for a few months and then evaluate.

  • Pat

    Zambrano didn’t quit on the team in October. He was pissed after a horrid start from which he was ejected and left the park. Any competent front office would have downplayed the incident. Then again, a competent front office would never have moved an 18 million a year pitcher into the bullpen as a set up man after four starts (one awful, three mediocre).

    What cracks me up is that the ones saying he’s a horrible teammate now are the same ones who had his back when he punched Barrett (the only of his blowups which was actually worth being upset over).

  • Kyle

    “Kyle, I am white and not on a winning team. If I go and punch one of my co-workers do you think anyone will have a problem with it? Of course they would. I would probably be looking for a new job tomorrow and be arrested for assault.”

    Are you a professional athlete? No? Okay, then your comparison is irrelevant.

    “The press doesn’t make Z an asshole Z makes Z an asshole.”

    Zambrano is definitely an asshole. The press chooses to make it seem like his being an asshole is unusual or unacceptable, when it is neither.

  • hogie

    If you look at his performance only, Z has been the best Cub pitcher of the decade. Try to debate it if you want, but he has held a sub 4 ERA, low homerun given, and a 2:1 strikeout to walk ratio. There have been lots of other reasons that this team has not had sucess. Yes he is overpaid, yes he has a temper, but how much does this differ from the overrated chemestry issue? Proir to the last couple of years, back when we were winning, there wasn’t this kind of uproar about his antics.

  • Toosh

    If he’s with the Cubs in 2012 the incidents will continue.

  • SirCub

    Z is an extremely passionate guy and that hasn’t changed throughout his career. I think the major difference between his successful early years and the last few antic-laden down years, has been his frustration with declining performance. Some of that is attributable to his own abilities diminishing with age (substantial loss in velocity), which has led to a decrease in his production. Hopefully some of this can be regained by his physical work in the offseason.

    But I think that another significant source for his frustration has been the performance of the team as a whole. Z is a competitive guy. And as much as he hates pitching poorly, I think he hates losing, and being in the cellar of the division even more. If the Cubs were able to rebound and get into a divisional race this year, I think that you would see a rejuvenated Z, with focus on playing the game to the best of his ability. Overly optimistic? Maybe, but what can I say, I’m a Cubs fan.

  • http://None Blinda

    At this point I dont really think we have an option but to get him a shot. He could be a very good number three starter and in an organization lacking starting pitching the possibility of giving Big Z a shot has to at least be an option.

    • die hard

      Front office giving him just enough rope to hang himself may be too much for Z to tolerate. ….. he could ask for trade with a willingness to renegotiate his contract…..

    • jandersonjr81

      On this team, Z is the Ace. Or co-Ace. Dempster is the one that needs to go.

  • kubphan82

    I know offseason moves are still in process; however, as the team stands now I wonder how Zambrano will keep his head with the offensive production loss the Cubs experienced with the loss of stellar defensive 1B Pena and his HR bat and mediocre defensive 3B ARam and his top 3B bat?

    If defensive woes plagued how Z felt about the Cubs last year, staking claim to a AAA team on the field, how will he harness that talk this year? I like the guy, he’s a fiery competitor, but emotionally I’m not sure he can handle this team… I hope for the best.

  • OHBearCub

    I personally like Z. i think he was the only one with the balls to stayed the obvious about what kind of team he was on. I don’t care if he nets the cap out gatorade machines or does whatever. he cares about winning and its obvious that he saw through the bullshit management regime that was in place. most all of my cubs fan friends live the guy as do I. i hope has a great year and I hope his career ends in Chicago on a great note and that he gets a darned statue someday. everybody is entitled ro their opinion and I respect that. i don’t care if fans don’t like him that’s fine its their right. i hated Derek Lee thought he was a lazy so along with Ramirez. I am not a follower and don’t expect others to be either. we are all entitled to our likes and dislikes. Race has nothing ro do with it … Ever
    .

  • OHBearCub

    Sorry dorm the terrible post.. New phone changes all my words on me. makes me sound like a Michigan grad

  • jandersonjr81

    If Theo and Jed trades Z, I will be pissed. Is does no good to trade a player, eating salary, and not being able to replace what you lost with What you save. I work every day. There are people I like and there are assholes. You know what, I still get my job done despite them. If Z’s actions affect another player, then its the other player that needs to go. Distraction are overrated. If I can’t keep my mind of What Z is going through while I’m in the battered box, then what kind of player am I. Beside, I think Z was right in all thee of the major blowups he had. He handled them wrong, but his opinion/view was right. I bet Z has a better season then Garza, Wilson, or Darvish. People forget how dominant he was to end the 2010 season.

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