MIAMI (AP) — Carlos Zambrano will get a much-needed fresh start with the Miami Marlins.
The Chicago Cubs traded their former ace Wednesday for Marlins right-hander Chris Volstad, pending physicals and approval by Major League Baseball, a person familiar with the negotiations said. The person confirmed the deal to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the teams hadn’t announced a deal.
Zambrano wore out his welcome in Chicago because of repeated meltdowns and tantrums. The most recent came when he cleaned out his locker and talked about retiring after giving up five homers and being ejected during a loss to Atlanta on Aug. 12. He was suspended without pay and then it was decided he would sit out the rest of the season.
In Miami he’ll be joining another former Chicagoan, Ozzie Guillen, who expressed interest in acquiring Zambrano when he was hired as the Marlins’ manager in October after stepping down as the White Sox skipper. Zambrano joins a franchise on the upswing after a winter spending spree resulted in the signings of All-Stars Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and Heath Bell.
Zambrano finished last year 9-7 with a 4.82 ERA. The Cubs expected more when he signed a $91.5 million deal over five seasons through 2012, including a $17.85 million salary last season and $18 million in 2012. As part of the trade, they’ll likely pay much of his salary.
Volstad went 5-13 last year with an ERA of 4.89, and his career record is 32-39. He has given up 69 homers over the past three seasons, which could mean trouble for him at Wrigley Field.
Zambrano is 125-81 with a 3.60 ERA after breaking in with the Cubs in 2001, and he threw a no-hitter against the Astros. But he had difficulty controlling his temper.
In 2007, he got into a fight with teammate Michael Barrett, first in the dugout and then in the locker room. Barrett ended up with a bruise under his eye and a cut lip.
In 2009, he went on tirade against an umpire, throwing a baseball into the outfield, pretending to eject the umpire and slamming his glove against the dugout fence, a tantrum that led to a suspension.
In 2010, Zambrano was placed on the restricted list for six weeks and sent to anger management after a verbal altercation with then-teammate Derrek Lee.
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