“I’ll be running nice and easy, just taking my time, not hustling. I apologize to the Cubs fans.”
— Carlos Zambrano, on how he’ll play upon his return from the disabled list
(Chicago Tribune Article)
The good news is Carlos Zambrano doesn’t have to take the fall for this mope wreck of a statement. The chain of command comes from up high and the Chicago Cubs suits are proving that not only do they not know how to win when it matters, but they also don’t know how to manage the public image of their players.
So, the really bad news is that baseball has openly lowered its standards. You don’t have to hustle anymore, folks — especially if you’re a ticking time-bomb with a slingshot arm and a once-sore hammy that has now fully healed, leaving no pain.
Indeed, Cy Young is rolling in his grave.
Okay, so I gotta ask: If Zambrano feels no pain then why won’t he be hustling on the field?
In the wake of steroids, with pandemic doubt blanketing the game from New York to Los Angeles to Los Angeles of Anaheim, the last thing we (and especially Cubs) fans need is to know that some players aren’t giving it their all and that management is okay with that. If you’re not healthy enough to play the game the way the game is supposed to be played, then you shouldn’t be playing the game… I don’t care how talented you are.
Note to Cubs: either sew Zambrano’s mouth shut or hire a new P.R. person. I got just the guy for you too — even colored his hair to match your duds: