Most professional sport teams have an ‘Us against the World’ mentality. The managers and players accuse media and fans of being too harsh, booing unnecessarily and not understanding a game they’ve never played. The team believes this mentality gives them an edge and players are better when trying to prove everyone else wrong. This weekend Carlos Zambrano told the Cub players what fans and media have been saying and writing all year and gave the team someone new to prove wrong.
This weekend Zambrano broke one of the 10 Unwritten Rules in Baseball, “Thou Shall Not Show Up Your Fielders”. He felt the players behind him weren’t doing all they could to keep his E.R.A. from rising above 6. Never mind that home run he gave up… He alienated most of his teammates by storming into the dugout cursing and pointing fingers at more well respected team leaders like Derrick Lee. Carlos has gotten a large sense of self-worth over the years and eventually will, like Sosa before him, get traded for a mediocre set of players in a move to help the chemistry and wallet of this bad team. No one knows if Cubs management can make it happen this year but he will now be hidden in the bullpen so Pinella and the rest of the team doesn’t have to see his face or hear is voice. He has given the players someone to prove wrong as they struggle from over 9 games back in the Central Division.
During his commentary on the scene in the Cubs dugout, Bob Brenly accurately called the Cubs a “dead ass team”. The Cubs are my favorite Chicago baseball team but the team (including crazy Carlos) has been non-competitive all year and Big-Z called them out on it. If this outburst pushes the players to try harder and puts the team back in the race, it is fine with me. I’ll even let Zambrano take a swing and Koyie Hill, if it helps, but I think Hill will put up a better fight that Barrett did. The Cubs have little chance of making the playoffs this year but at least Zambrano’s latest outburst gives the team some intrigue and might make the team a little more competitive.