From the Wire … Cubs Deal Zambrano to Miami for Chris Volstad

According to multiple reports, the Cubs have agreed in principal on a trade that would send Carlos Zambrano to the Miami Marlins for Chris Volstad. The deal is pending approval from the commissioner’s office due to the amount of money included in the deal … reports are suggesting between $15 and $17 million will be sent to the Marlins along with Zambrano. Both players also have to pass physicals before the trade can be announced.

It appears the Carlos Zambrano era with the Chicago Cubs will officially come to an end in the next 24 hours.

The Marlins selected Chris Volstad in the first round of the 2005 draft. The 25-year old, 6-foot-8 pitcher posted a 5-13 record in 29 starts last season with a 4.89 ERA and a 1.43 WHIP. Volstad was 2-5 in 15 road starts with a 4.89 ERA and a 1.48 WHIP.

Volstad is arbitration eligible for the first time in 2012 after being paid $445,000 last season. The Cubs have Volstad under control through the 2014 season.

Chris Volstad’s Page on Baseball-Reference

Stay Tuned … will update when additional information is made available.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO

Quote of the Day

"If a baseball could talk, it would sound like Ron Santo." – Pat Hughes - Remembering Ron Santo #10 (1940-2010)

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  • Tony_Hall

    I wish to remember the young Big Z, who was dominate and a fun loving ballplayer, who liked to knock the ball of the park.  

    See ya Big Z…wow is that going to an interesting clubhouse in Miami…

    • John_CC

      Agree and agreed.  That is gonna be sh*t-show down there.

      I also have to add, good riddance, and don’t let the water cooler smash you on the way out.

      The moaning and groaning has already commenced over what fools the new guys are, but I am just glad that Z is gone. He should have been traded in 2009. It was so easy to see that his career was going to go exactly the way it did; mentality of a 17 year old boy and an overworked shoulder. 

  • BCT082002

    So the Cubs pay most of Zambrano’s salary to win games for Miami. Someone is stupid.

    • Schwimmer

      I agree!  If it is true that the CUBS are ONLY going to get $2.0 to $2.5 m from the MARLINS…I think it was a stupid Deal!

      VOLSTAD, while younger, has shown nothing to put him, even in the league of “Z.”

      If Z wasn’t worth $5.0m — then, with the CUB’s need for pitching he should have been given a chance.

      I’m sorry — but I am very disappointed in THEO & Company on this trade.

      • John_CC

        Given A chance? How many chances does Z get? He sucked last year, and was completely unstable. He has been for years. 

    • Mark

      That’s just what I think too.  We did the same dumb ass thing with Fukodome and others.  You send a big contract over to the other team WITH the US paying 3/4 of his salary.  I don’t get it!  Just sit his ass and use him in the bullpen or a PH.  If we are pissed at him, this is just what he wants.  1 more year wouldn’t hurt, just like waiting for a WS.  God,They do this ALL THE TIME!

  • Texcubnut


  • Mark


  • J Daniel

    Not sure if I agree with this one especially if they are including a lot of cash – although it is not my cash.  I understand he needed to be moved but I think the return should have been greater.

    If this is the best that can be done, then so be it.  Also shows why not much has been done yet including Byrd and Sori.  They are not worth anything.

  • matthew8510

    now is there any way we pay 54 mil to get rid of soriano

    • Tony_Hall

      Yes, we can cut him and pay $54M.

    • Anonymous47701

      There had better be a way to do it, cause he doesn’t belong in the National League anymore.

  • cubtex

    If they are eating 15 mil and all we get back is a very hittable 6’8 Casey Coleman….they should have kept Z and tried to move him during the season to a team pushing for the playoffs. This is a definate sell low deal. You heard it hear first…..Z will win 12 games plus for the Marlins.

    • ChadAudio

      I agree.  Z will do better for another team – but he wouldn’t do much for the Cubs.  The Cubs-Z setup had spoiled, and it just wouldn’t work.  Let’s just hope it isn’t too much more going to the Marlins.

      I’ll miss his sweet home run swing, and always remember listening to his no-hitter on the radio while my wife and I repainted our basement.

      See ya Z.

    • RynoTiger

      hey cubtex, so far I agree with you on this deal. Not that great. Hopefully the cash is much much lower. though he can be a jerk, Z is still more valuable than Volstad.

      especially considering that the Marlins may have allegedly been guilty of tampering since Guillen may have talked with Z during the off-season about playing for the Marlins. 

      • Dorasaga

        At least you are not mean to him. Why be mean? Z had his moments. He was a “full athlete.” He ran as a pinch runner; he hustled as a pinch hitter; he always showed his desire to win.

        He was not liked, but he’s better than all those Cubbie veterans who ride the pine and held their own meetings without a manager around.

    • J Daniel


    • Ripsnorter1

      Yes, he’ll probably win more than 12 games because he’s personal friends with Ozzie, and his vendetta vs. the Cubs will be negated (except when he pitches against us). The question was never one of talent–the issue was his personality and self-destructive temper (steroid-rage?). 

      In any case, I’m glad the cry-baby is gone, although….

      Robbed of cash and a nothing pitcher in return. 

      Imagine this rotation:
      Wood–the Ace!
      Coleman–our #2 starter
      ???? as yet, unnamed or unacquired
      Dumpster–he pitches 200 innings for us, although his ERA is over 7.50.

      Garza–traded for a handful of (fill in the blank here: prospects, or garbage whose quality is somewhat below Volstad’s).

      Secretly, P.K. Ricketts is pleased……

      And Tony is enjoying watching this “rebuilding” effort……

  • Chuckeroo

    pending a physical?,how could z pass a mental physical?lay down on the couch nutball.join another wacko in ozzie and family!

  • Anthony

    paulc will like this——

    back in the day, this stuff never happened, and this is what is wrong with MLB

    way back, the lingo would have been this

    “hey Carlos, feel lucky to be here, and if you don’t like it, we can replace you”

    “in the off season, we can get you a job to supplement your income, so what can you do, or pick, you own a shovel?”

    In the 70’s, Zambrano would have been sent home and eventually retire as a normal person who screwed up an opportunity.

    In today’s business of baseball, an aaaashowl holds the cards and puts ownership at their mercy.

    Leg injury, no way………….hey Z, shut it down, you got you wish, for another 1st round under-achiever and a ransom.

    paul, chime in

    the reserve clause and FA killed the game

    • ChadAudio

      Just remember, when the owners “held the cards” – they were jerks too.

      • Anthony

        the jerks who took the business risks

        • ChadAudio

          There is a reason the owners lost all of their leverage… they abused it grotesquely.

          The players union is bad too.  But the owners were no angel.

        • John_CC

          And reaped all the reward.

    • Tony_Hall

      “For a hundred years the owners screwed the players. For 25 yearsthe players have screwed the owners – they’ve got 75 years to go.”
      – Yankees pitcher Jim Bouton

      • ChadAudio

        Well said Tony.  I should have just scrolled down before even bothering to write my own response.

      • Gramps

        Yes, Tony, and both of them are now screwing us, the fans! $3-4 million salaries for crappy players? $7.50 for a beer at the games? A cost of over $200 for a family of 4 to go to a game? A fan today is being screwed by billionaires (owners) and millionaires (players).

    • paulcatanese

      I agree Z had to go, but he took a lot of bucks with him. He will be very happy with Ozzie.
      He was a spoiled brat, but he had the contract to back him up.
      Also not too bright when he quit the team last year and should have been held to that decision.
      Free agency has been hard on Baseball,players getting the contract and playing the string out.
      It’s not the owners its been hard on but the fans, as they are the ones who see favorite players move to the money just as soon as they get to the end of their contract.
      Owners are still making money, but as this keeps up it may spell the end of the game as we know it.
      With the present  way the game is going look for pay TV  or no broadcast of games at all, thinking that this will bring fans to the park at increases in ticket prices.
      The game I knew was gone long ago and replaced with money hungry players and owners still getting their share.
      No one can tell me these guys are worth the multi millions they are commanding now.
      It may have been that the owners were in complete control over the players, but guess what, the fans had a game that a family could afford to go and see.
      Now take a deep breath and see what could be next, Z cost the Cubs,as will Soriono and Byrd, and then the Cubs may spill out multi millions for a untried player from Cuba. It’s just money,right? But where do they get it?

  • cubs1967

    wow………we trade sean marshall and get the LH version of casey coleman, the new sean estes, in travis coleman estes(wood) with the hope a 19 yr 2B from the reds farm crappy system as the deal maker; yet get a better pitcher in volstad for the nut job; overpaid clown in Z.

    damn, if that don’t show how bad we got screwed on marshall.

    congrats on moving Z and getting a decent pitcher.

    time to move dempster and bryd to the red sox plus about 7M for michael bowden and keep garza and go for this ’12 rotation:(demp and bryd will add some needed maturity to that clubhouse).

    travis coleman estes

    with wells and mcnutt as long relief plus bowden (from waubonsie valley high) as backup.

    now lets see if Sori gets moved…………..1 for 2 in trades; can team genius theo go 2 for 3!?

    • Tony_Hall

      I’m shocked you think Volstad is a better pitcher than Wood.  Figured you would hate this deal…have you looked at Volstad’s stats, they were worse than I thought when I looked.

      • cubs1967

        i like the deal………volstad is better than travis coleman estes…….definitely more upside if there is one. wood has none……soft tossing lefty sure to give up 6-8 or more runs when his curve is hanging and the wind is blowing.
        moving Z for anything is good.  volstad shocks me the marlins would do that.
        did you see travis coleman estes’s stats last year…..crap would be the 1st adjective to my mind.

        (the problem is marshall is really good……we should of asked for homer bailey)

        anyway; none of it matters. 2012 is a quitters year. all about the iowa wrigley cubs……….and losing 100 games.

        neither pitcher will be on the team IF they are any good in 2015………….or maybe 1 will be as the 5 starter.

        • Tony_Hall

          4.84 ERA 1.49 WHIP
          4.89 ERA 1.42 WHIP

          Both had bad years…

          I’ll say it again, I’ll take the under on 100 losses.

          • cubtex

            Ill take Travis Wood over Volstad anyday. Volstad didn’t even dominate in the minors. I think Wood could be a decent back end guy.

          • Dorasaga

            This is a good time to start a Travis Wood Watch.

        • cubs1967

          volstad WAR in 2011 was 1.3
          travis coleman estes was 1.1.

          bill james has volstad at 8-10 with 4,34ERA
          estes jr at 10-8 at 4.19 ERA.; both for 2012.

          both so-so

          BUT marshall is so much better than Z.  bad trade.

          plus i’ll put my money on the 6 foot 8 guy in volstad figuring it out over the sean estes JR soft tossing lefty anyday!

          • Hoosierboy3423

            The Marshall Trade was not to acquire Wood alone, until you understand that Torreyes was the main piece no trades the Theo Regime ever makes will ever make much sense to you.

          • Aaron

            That is pure fiction….even Epstein said Wood was the key…Torreyes was just icing on the cake

          • cubs1967

            thanks. you took the words out of my mouth!

          • OttawaBob

            I  think Torreyes is a little more than icing on the cake. I’ll take him over your hero Hak Ju Lee in a heart beat. Did you see what Lee hit last year when they moved to AA ……………190 !!!

          • Tony_Hall

            Did you see what he did in High A, where he was suppose to be the whole year?

            318/389/443/832He is a 1 level at a time player, he’s still very young.  Most likely they wanted him to see the next level, so he knew he would have to keep working.

      • Boots

        They looked better as the season went on though and he had a pretty good September. He is only 25. 

        I like the move and am happy to see Z gone. Regardless of how strong this move proves to be, he needed to go. I feel it is akin to the culture that Bradley created in the clubhouse. Z did not deserve to put on a Cubs uniform anymore, and as Theo stated, he shouldn’t be part of the transformation

        • Tony_Hall

          I’m all for Z being gone and was expecting a bag of balls in return.  I was just expecting Cubs1967 to totally blast the move.

          • Hoosierboy3423

            Seems like its just giving him fodder to blast the Marshall trade more.  Keeps forgetting that Torreyes was the centerpiece and not Wood.

          • cubs1967

            christ……… me when you understand when the team President states:
            wood was the key.


          • cubs1967

            every move i rate on it’s own merit. the marshall trade was a joke.  this was better than i thought.
            now for the record; i don’t care at all about what they get for Sori; just get him off the team.(and if they can save like 9M over 3 yrs-good)
            BUT; i’ll be screaming if garza or byrd or demp gets moved and I don’t like it.

          • OttawaBob

            Speaking of jokes…..Byrd is a joke. Why in the world would you be upset if they move that hotdog.  The guy is just bad and I wouldn’t count on anything but a low level prospect.back in return.

          • Tony_Hall

            I wouldn’t expect anything else.

            I actually like the trade for Marshall, way better than this one.  

            Byrd – don’t expect much, $6.5M for Byrd is more than he’s worth.

            Dempster can be moved June/July for some mid level prospects, if he is having a decent season.

            Garza is not going anywhere, until some GM gets desperate and I fear the worse, that no one will get desperate and he won’t sign an extension and will walk after 2013.

    • Jason Douglas

      lol on “new Sean Estes”.   I would also accept “new Glendon Rusch”!

  • Kevin

    he needed to go. money is no concern at this point for the cubs, management or ricketts himself. Clearing out clubhouse guys who drag down the whole organization is the main goal at this point. If it costs 17 million for someone to take carlos then so be it. he had to go.

  • cubtex

    I wonder if they could have gotten Chris Coghlan instead of Volstad. I would have much rather taken a chance on him!

    • daverj

      I would have preferred Coghlan too, but given that the Cubs only received Volstad back and paid most of Z’s salary, I doubt Coghlan was an option.  The Marlins soured Volstad and might have non-tendered him anyway.  From what I have read, they still see Coghlan as a part of their future.  

  • mutantbeast

    would have been nicer if they had gotten Dominguez also. This is kind of a Meh trade.

  • diehardcubfan

    Overall might not be a good trade but it again changes the character of this team.

    I also think it will be much less likely that Garza will be dealt until at least near the trade deadline. 

  • Breeden

    The old computer phase …. garbage in, garbage out.

  • Michael

    I have not criticized Theo and Companies moves so far this offseason, but this is a head scratched. Big Z and a ton of money, for a 4.5+ era guy? Hmmmm

    • diehardcubfan

      I know what you mean that from the outside it is not great.  I think it signals that Theo is committed to changing the character and makeup of the team. 

      Personally, I will be very surprised if Big Z has a good season.  Watching him the past couple of years has convinced me his best years are well behind him.

      I do not think he can evolve enough as a pitcher to even come close to what he used to be.

  • Calicub

    this deal better have more to it.

    because if nt the cubs got bent over a table.

  • cubtex

    As I said earlier….If Garza is dealt,Ryan Dempster will be our ace and Travis Wood could be our #2. Bleacher fans bring your gloves to the park :)

  • Gary J

    Although I loved watching Z bat, as a fan I gotta say I’d rather watch a 25 year old hungry former-phenom than the 30 year old former all-star. I have gotten increasingly nauseous watching Z throw temper tantrums on the mound when a ground ball gets past someone that he think they should have gotten to or when someone makes an error.  Volstad was the Marlins top prospect per BA in 2008 and showed it that first year… and then had three sub-par years.

    At 25 he’s not a lost cause yet – so I’ll have more fun watching him as part of a hungry young squad than a spoiled and entitled guy that has been such a head case that he’s been kicked off the team two years in a row and continually gets in scrubs with his own teammates.

    Let’s see what the change of scenery and a new pitching coach can do with the kid.

    Yes it’s a sell low with Z… but also a buy low.  It’s actually more than I expected to get back.

  • Devin

    No matter who the cubs traded Big Z to, they will have the short end of the stick because they will have to be responsible for the salary. but chris volstad is still young enough to the point that maybe Bosio can help improve his mechanics. at this point. cubs don’t have anything to lose

  • Meoli

    This ain’t your Daddy’s Cubs management. They’re serious!

  • Hoosierboy3423

    I really dont think this trade was about anything more than gettin Z out and getting a warm body back in his place.  If they let him go they get nothing at all back and still pay his salary.  So instead they trade him to the Marlins, there by sticking it to Ozzie, because there is no way those two egos can coexist in the same clubhouse.  And they get a warm body back in return. A big tall fairly young pitcher they have control over at a cheap price for the next couple years.  Maybe they can develop him, maybe they cannot.  But at least Z is gone while the rebuilding happens so he cannot taint anything good that is brought in.

  • matthew8510

     Three AL teams interested in Soriano. Orioles need a DH and Buck Showalter had Soriano in Texas 6 minutes ago

    • Aaron

      Who wouldn’t be interested now that they see what the Cubs landed (or lack thereof) in exchange for a solid veteran starter?

      As I’ve said before…while grossly overpaid both Soriano and Zambrano are solid players.

      After the Zambrano trade, I’ll bet teams are lining up for Cubs veterans in hopes of landing them for a spare part while having the Cubs pick up nearly all salary still owed.

      The O’s probably think they could land him for a Clay Rapada

  • Aaron

    Don’t know if it was a misprint but the Tribune’s latest article says Cubs paying just $3 million….betting it’s a misprint but if true…count me as a supporter of the trade

    • Tony_Hall

      All BUT $3M

      “The Cubs will pay all but $3 million of the $18 million owed Zambrano.”,0,6396252.story 

      Volstad is projected to make $2.6M in arbitration, so the $3M is his pay.

      • Aaron

        Yeah…they literally updated right after i posted that

        • Aaron

          ….Which means this trade is incredibly bad from my perspective

          • Tony_Hall

            Not sure what you expected they would actually get back for Zambrano. He had a no-trade clause and would only accept a trade to Miami.  The Cubs were bluffing that they would accept him back.  

          • J Daniel

            Should have accepted him back to increase value or let him ROT!  

            I think we all agree, at least at this point, next year is a wash.  If that is the case, they could have been patient or let him ROT!

            Basically gave him away.  WOW!  A JH move.

            It does show you though the very sad state the club is in.

          • Tony_Hall

            Letting him rot, doesn’t help out the clubhouse, and doesn’t give you a 6’8″ guy walking around the clubhouse, who may have a chance to resurrect his career.

          • cubs1967

            come on aaron………..Z had to go.  even if released; his value was destroyed by his attitude.  forget he can still pitch and is much better than volstad will ever be.  the damage was done.

            if ya want to hammer on theo—look at volstad’s 1.3 WAR and compare to estes jr’s 1.1 WAR and ask how  
            is this all we got for marshall??

            AND DONT ANYONE even say anything about the 20th rated prospect in the trade; theo said wood was the key.  the reds system sucks. get real if torreyes will even be better than barney.

          • Brian

            I can’t believe it, but in regards to the Zambrano trade, I totally agree with 1967.

        • Tony_Hall

          A buddy of mine texted me exactly what you said…so they must have fixed it.  I liked their way better :)

  • Aaron

    I also wanted to add something about this trade that could have reprecussions that might otherwise be ignored and that’s the fact that other returns for veterans…in particular, Garza might not bring hardly anything in return.


    Because trading Marshall indicated they were rebuilding and now Zambrano confirms it. Look at how teams used to fleece the Pirates (including the Cubs)…offering next to nothing for their solid yet overpaid (in most cases) veterans and it was all because teams knew they were dumping to rebuild.

    Now….remember what the Padres received for Mike Adams? They weren’t going around telling teams they were rebuilding….especially after narrowly missing the playoffs the year before….yet the received 2 top pitching prospects. How about Latos? He easy cost-controlled and they still hadn’t used the rebuilding word….and got a king’s ransom…

    Flash forward to Marshall and the Cubs got quantity over quality….it’s because they already knew they could fleece the Cubs and give up next to nothing.

    Look at what happened on the south side. Kenny inexplicably did the exact same thing, telegraphing their rebuild by actually saying it….and look at the pathetic returns he received for Santos and Quentin and the pathetic offers he got for Danks which led to his extension.

    Don’t believe what I’m saying? There’s your proof right there in the same damn city

    • cubs1967

      garza does not have to be moved……..that’s the difference.
      he’s not a nutjob or a potential FA.
      plus he’s 28………so be the time he’s 31 at the latest this team had better be a contender……
      so no………garza can stay!

    • SuzyS

      Aaron, I disagree with you re Garza. The Cubs do not HAVE to trade Garza…like they HAD to trade Z. With Theo’s statement that Garza is the type of pitcher you can build around…I believe the Cubs will trade him only if another team
      meets their high asking price. If not, I don’t see the Cub’s moving him…buit rather trying to extend him….(AKA Danks on the South side.) Interesting enough in Dank’s contract…only the first year is a guaranteed no-trade clause.
      As far as Zambrano goes it was a great deal…IMHO…because we did not have to a take another bad contract back like we did when we dumped Uncle MIlty.
      Anything better than a batboy is acceptable…even if we have to pay the freight.

      • cubtex

        They didn’t have to take back a bad contact Suzy because Z is only signed for 1 year and they paid 15 million of it. Huge difference compared to Milton Bradley and Carlos Silva.

      • Aaron

        I think everyone missed my point…it was that if Theo tried trading Garza just as Kenny tried trading Danks…he wouldn’t get much of a return because he already spilled the beans about rebuilding just as Theo did…so point being…Garza is almost guaranteed to be extended now. I would imagine teams are offering far less than they were for Danks even…because Danks is a lefty. We will all know the answer once Garza is extended.

        • Cocub

          ??? Do you really think every GM in baseball didn’t already know the Cubs were in rebuilding mode prior to the Marshall trade? Garza’s worth is independant of any club’s perception of the Cub’s “mode”. I think your analysis of the offseason is getting absurd. Maybe you are just bored and that’s leading to some outrageous claims and predictions. Like when you were convinced Coco was coming to the Cubs just because he hadn’t said he wasn’t.

          • Aaron

            that was a ridiculous post by you, but I’ll respond anyway.

            1) No, they didn’t, because all all Theo said was changing short-term assets into long-term assets and that could be via trade or extensions. He could’ve determined that Marshall and Garza are part of the future, and extended them (still can with Garza), so not everyone knew he was blowing the thing up. The Stewart trade would indicate that he was trying to win next year. Why? Because Stewart and Weathers were NOT in keeping with his philosophy as both were not under team control for as long as LeMahieu and Colvin were for the Cubs. Nor were they cheaper, and LeMahieu and Colvin had more options left. So, no, I don’t buy it, and neither did the media. They all were linking Fielder and other high-priced free agents to the Cubs with “sources”, and we all know the Cubs were actually involved in the bidding for Pujols, if only to drive his price higher and out of the division.

            2) Garza’s worth is NOT independent of that, and that is why I offered up Danks as a case-in-point. In fact, not only does fangraphs and baseball reference link them closely together as pitchers, but their salaries and trade value are VERY similar. If the Yankees weren’t even willing to include Montero, Banuelos, or Betances (note, NOT all, but at least 1 or 2, which they weren’t even willing to do for Danks), then you can see their thought process, and Kenny recognized that. If teams know you’re in complete “sell” mode, they’re not going to offer you much of anything…and that’s why Garza’s value has been hurt.

            3) It was NOT me that linked Crisp to the Cubs…so just keep that in mind. Nearly every media outlet had him signing with the Cubs, so the only thing I said, was that since the Cubs were linked to him, and were known to be shopping Soriano and Byrd, that perhaps that is why he and his agent wouldn’t name a team.

            So….how are you going to spin what I just said now?!?

          • Dorasaga

            Cocub wrote your analysis of this rebuilding thing got “absurd.” He didn’t wrote you off as “ridiculous.”

            Either way… let’s stay classy, shall we?

          • Cocub

            1) “changing short term assets into long term assets” is the definition of rebuilding
            2) Garza’s value is independent to the “rebuilding perception” because the Cubs have stated that they are perfectly happy keeping him if the price isn’t right.  Other teams KNOW they aren’t going to be able to steal him
            3)You’re right about the Crisp comment. . you weren’t really predicting anything, just stating possible scenarios.  I stand corrected on that one.  You even stated you liked how unpredictable the current  management is.  But wait. . .are they unpredictable? or did they telegraph the rebuilding mode with the Marshall trade? 😉  The answer is. . .everyone knew the Cubs were rebuilding when Theo et al. came on board.  Management never said they were serious about Fielder. . .Sveum went out of his way to deny it. . .right after the winter meetings.  If anything, I thought they were feigning the rebuilding and would swoop in on some big signings.  Who knows? Maybe they’ll still get Fielder.

    • Patrick_Schaefer

      Marshall was a good deal IMHO. Aaron ask yourself this did you really want Big Z around another year? Don’t get me wrong I WISH we paid less or got more in return but you and everyone on here have been begging the Cubs to get rid of him. Volstad is a stop-gap with some potential.

      • Aaron

        Already answered below…yes glad to be rid of him, but not at all costs

    • Dorasaga

      You know, Aaron, the Padres HAS ALWAYS BEEN rebuilding since they failed to beat the Roc in 2007.

      I double checked–look at their results in 2008, ’09… That’s a rebuilding team. Other GMs know that.

      Don’t you think the Pad got a good return for Mike because Mike has been a hell great reliever? I know you didn’t like the Marshall-Wood deal, but seriously, do you really believe that the Cubs CAN ask for whatever they wanted? I see there’s a limit of bargain power when all factors are considered, whether it’s talent level or how GMs play out their strategies against each other.

  • cubtex

    It’s a damn shame that I kind of think Rodrigo Lopez would be an upgrade to the Cubs rotation :)

    • Aaron

      Funny you should say that…I was thinking the same thing even prior to this trade bit now it’s even more applicable.

      Someone please tell me what is the difference in terms of stats between:
      Wood, Volstad, Wells, and Lopez….the answer in terms of stats, velocity, etc is NOTHING…

      And if anyone says “potential” then I guess we could throw Coleman, Rich Hill, among others in they group…at some point you’ve had enough opportunity to prove yourself both in the minors and MLB and none of those guys have had but one good season in a MLB rotation with several years of opportunity.

      It sure as hell seems that Epstein enjoys collecting 4th-5th starters and I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if he signs Lopez.

      • cubtex

        The Cubs could have an entire rotation of 4’s and 5’s the way it is looking.

        • Tony_Hall

          Isn’t that what we have been saying the last couple of years, a rotation full of 4’s and 5’s.  Garza was the only guy that last year you would say was a 2 or a 3…had to at least throw in the 3 :)

      • Ripsnorter1

        Epstein doesn’t collect 4th or 5th starters, Aaron.

        Epstein collects FAILED 4th or 5th starters.
        Just needed to correct you on this point.

  • Aorcappy01

    Once again some cubs fans on this board are incredible. In their eyes we deal z and we dont get enough back. Forget the fact z had little value due to his contract and attitude. Forget the marlins did the cubs a huge favor by taking z and sending us back a starting pitcher. Forget that despite all his talent, z is a head case who damaged and divided the clubhouse twice (atleast twice that was reported). I love all the arm chair quarterbacks around here who think because they play fantasy baseball they can run a real life baseball team. Neal as always your website is great and top notch , despite some posters around here

    • Gary J


      • John_CC


        Not sure where all the value is in Z that some are talking in about.  In the last couple years, the 18$M man was – sent to the bullpen, suspended by his team, put on the disqualified list by his team, walked out on his team, called out his teammates in the press, officially quit his team… O yeah, and he sucked when he was pitching last year. He hasn’t thrown more than 170 innings in 4 years.

        If you mean his value based on 2008 and prior, then sure, this looks real bad. But we are looking forward. I don’t care if he wins 15 games for Ozzie, he had to go.

    • cubtex

      Forget the fact that the Cubs picked up 15 out of the 18 mil….and no…I despise fantasy baseball!

    • OttawaBob

      Wait til you see the fallout when we unload Soriano!!??

    • Brett

      Amen brother! He had to go….& they actually got a 25yr old starter back for a guy nobody else would take. God bless Ozzie for this one.

      People are up constantly fired up about deals. Its like all the Cubs parts are gold & every other organizations have garbage. Did anyone watch the last 2 seasons? This was a good deal b/c I needed to happen. The Marshall deal was good too. This board is the only place I’ve seen/heard that the Cubs got “screwed.”

      • OttawaBob

        Brett, thats the post of the month !!! Its nice to read a comment where I’m not walking over to the nearest wall to beat my head against 10 to 15 times.  Thanks to you and Tony for displaying some sanity.  

    • Aaron

      It wasn’t about rebuilding”not getting enough in return”. It’s all about fairness. Fact is, when you pay almost 100% of a pitcher’s salary who, at worst, is a solid #2…then you expect more in return. Imagine fact, literally every trade you see talked about in media outlets has the following disclaimer…”depending how much salary xyz team is willing to pay will determine the quality of players in return”

      Sorry, but paying all but $3 million of Zambrano’s deal and receiving a pitcher that wasn’t even pegged for their rotation and was even mentioned as a non-tender candidate hardly qualifies as fair value.

      While I agree the Cubs had to get rid of him…the fact that they aren’t even expected to compete next year (meaning most players wouldn’t even be on the team in the future anyway) should’ve led them to make a better business decision by hoping he behaves (anything but a sure thing I will freely admit), then giving him a trade to a contender at the deadline when teams are desperate for pitching.

      It’s just a flat out bad decision based solely on the money they’re including relative to the lack of value in Volstad. They really sold low on him which is why Theo is committing the team to Marmol…to rebuild value…so he went against that with Zambrano.

      Also, if he was willing to trade Zambrano for poor returns due to attitude and lack of production relative to salary then he MUST deal Soriano at all costs, because while he isn’t a bad teammate as Zambrano is seen, he routinely does NOT hustle, thus setting a bad example for teammates.

      If he unloads both players this offseason then I will say his plan makes sense and he’s trying to get rid of the bad apples on the team. But if he doesn’t then this trade makes little sense. The same could be said of Byrd too, who refuses to play team ball, routinely with his poor at bats but also in his stated refusal to play anywhere other than CF…even with his diminished range.

      • Cocub

        Dude I can honestly say that if I had to share a clubhouse with someone as toxic as Z, I’d be passing around the collection plate to help to club cover his ridiculous salary and ship his immature butt as far away from Wrigley as possible. Cubs management intelligently recognized that no level of production from Z was worth the poison he oozes in the clubhouse. Good riddance. As for Sori, he’s a decent teammate. And Byrd is a great teammate. Totally different stories than Z. Really, who quits an MLB team. Best job in the world.

      • OttawaBob

        Aaron, Come on now, AT WORST A SOLID #2. When?? 2005!!!!  Lets not get crazy.

  • jtrain23

    Im just glad that my job isnt trying to keep some of you people happy. Last year you would have paid money out of your own pocket to trade him for a bucket of balls. Now we arent getting enough out of the guy who did nothing except walk out on his team last year.

    Good trade. We got a younger serviceable pitcher for a used up head case. For those of you disillusioned with the idea that z is still a top level pitcher, quit drinking the kool-aid.

    • gocubs

      Excellent trade.  Cubs got a very cheap, young, back end starter that is under team control for a long time with plenty of upside.  They gave up a very, very expensive back end starter with only 1 yr left on his deal with no draft picks coming back (with new cba rules) if you kept him.  And we saved some money.  Excellent trade.

      The Marshall trade was an even better trade.  We traded a guy who has only 1 more yr of team control (with no draft picks coming back (with new cba rules) if you kept him for a young lefty starter with lots of potential, our possible 2B of the future and a good young OF.  Really? All with lots of years under team control.  Thats a terrific trade.

      People here are having a very tough time understanding how these extremely intelligent, long sighted, profoundly thoughtful guys are running the team.  These guys are dealing on a baseball knowledge level that is far, far, far higher than what we have ever experienced here in Chicago.  Please Cubs fans, please come into the modern age.  Why is it so hard to understand that they are in the business of turning short term assets into long term assets and maximizing value of each and every little part of this organization.  Wow, I am surprised how negative, how short sighted some of the posters here are. 

      • Aaron

        There’s a very distinct line between “turning short term assets into long-term assets” and “getting fair value” in doing so.

        First of all, do you think the Stewart and Weathers for Colvin and LeMahieu trade was fair value? Do you think that was “turning short-term assets into long-term assets”? If you do, then you’re completely delusional, because both Stewart and Weathers aren’t under team control for as long as Colvin and LeMahieu were, and because of Stewart, they certainly were more cost effective. If it had been merely Stewart for Colvin, then it would’ve been a fair trade.

        Then, you start analyzing the Marshall for Wood, Sappelt, and Torreyes. You have to go back to Marshall’s record as a starter, (which overall, is better than Wood’s track record), and ask yourself if you committed to him full-time as a starter….would he hold even more value? And if you answered yes, then why the hell would you trade him for a 5th starter at best that is on the verge of pitching himself out of the league, a 5th OF, and a 19 year old midget 2B?!? And if you say, “well, Marshall was only a reliever”, you have to at least consider the fact that even the new regime had talked about moving him to the rotation, and in that case, even being a few years removed from a starter, he is still more valuable than Wood, because at least he could go back to relief with excellent success. Wood has not proven himself in the pen. He is the equivalent of a one-hit wonder, just like Wells, and just like Volstad that we just acquired.

        Then you go to the Zambrano trade, and you realize that the Cubs literally just gave Zambrano to the Marlins for nothing, and on the TCR, they described it very well. With regards to Zambrano after next season, the Marlins could offer him $12.5 million and receive a supplemental pick if he decides to sign elsewhere, which he would likely do if he had a good year and received a multi-year deal. Even if he has a mediocre year, say a 4.50 ERA, they could still do that, and he might get a multi-year offer because of his good track record ERA-wise and relative youth. So…the Marlins got Zambrano for free (because Volstad’s $3 million comes off their books), AND likely landed a supplemental pick, once again, for FREE.

    • Polar1292003

      For the last couple years, some of us and been vocal, even if only in our living rooms that we nneded to overhaul this team.  The overhaul will be painful but needed to happen.  Z is gone and he is not coming back. The farm system is better today than last year.  Change takes place, either catastrophically or incramental, but change is change, in the long run we will be better for it. There is a plan, whether we like it or not.  WE were not contending this year anyway, does it matter if we lose 85 or 100 games.  losing is losing.  

  • cubtex

    I went back to baseball america’s scouting report in 2007 when he was the Marlins number #1 prospect and they hit the nail on the head with this guy. He doesn’t miss many bats and gave up an alarming number of hits in Jupiter. See scouting report below..
    Weaknesses: If anything, Volstad has a tendency to be around the plate too much. That allows hitters to dig in and led to his struggles in May. He has averaged just 6.4 strikeouts per nine innings his first two seasons, another sign that he has been too hittable considering the quality of his stuff. Some non-believers say he might wind up as little more than a middle-of-the-rotation workhorse who won’t blow hitters away. Volstad still needs to add muscle and grow into his frame, especially in the lower half. Though he’s well coordinated, his long frame always will make it a challenge for him to maintain his delivery.

    • Dorasaga

      BA: “he’s well coordinated, his long frame always will make it a challenge for him to maintain his delivery.

      I bet the magazine’s writer said the same thing about Randy Johnson.

      Some blogger, whom I respected, says Darvish has a longer frame than DiceK, hence the young Persian’s better potential, etc.

      This characteristic can go either way.

  • Brian

    I understand everyone’s thoughts, but let’s break it down logically.

    The whole league KNEW Zambrano was not pitching for the Cubs again. He quit on the team. You can’t keep a guy like that around. The other players would have been pissed.

    Secondly, he had a no-trade clause. Florida, sorry Miami, was the only team that would take him. Ricketts stood up and ate that salary to make it happen. And we got a first-round bust in return. Be honest, we could not have done better because every team knew we HAD to get rid of him. And Miami knew they were the only team that he would go to, and the only team that would take him.

    In the end, we got rid of a player we had to, and got a project in return. Could have been a lot worse.

    • cubtex

      By what I was reading and hearing, Z was looking good in Venezuela this winter.His stuff was good. Don’t you think it would have been better to keep him for half the year and roll the dice that he pitches well enough for a playoff team to want him for their playoff push? That makes more sense to me than eating 15 mil of his contract now.

      • cc002600

        not at all.
        he’s an idiot.
        buh bye.
        so long
        good riddance

      • Thebearsays

        I don’t care how well he might have pitched, the Cubs are better off without him…And I love that we are giving LaHair a shot at 1B, also that Theo is still wanting Kerry Wood back.

  • diehardcubfan

    Interesting how Theo has come out to say that LaHair is the Cubs 1B.  It would then appear that the Cubs might be out of the running on Fielder.  It could also be a stunt to distract others on what the Cubs are doing in regards to Fielder.

    From all indications though I do not see Fielder on the Cubs roster.  LaHair does deserve a shot.

    I think based on the direction of the Cubs I think Jorge Soler will be the target of the Cubs pursuit of one of the Cuban outfielders. 

    Based on all the comments about Soler he is the best long term option that will not cost a mint.

  • jw

    ” His deal’s $18.3 million average annual value is the highest for a pitcher with a multiyear contract and No. 5 overall behind Roger Clemens($28 million), Alex Rodriguez ($25.2 million), Manny Ramirez ($20 million) and Derek Jeter ($18.9 million).”

    Reported on Espn when Hendry gave Zambrano the 5 year deal…there is an option for 19 plus million after next year if Zambrano finishes 4th or better in Cy Young balloting.

    Shows what a bad GM Hendry was signing him after the Barrett incident and possible shoulder problems and cramping

    If they waited until later it delayed getting his bad karma out of the clubhouse and delayed the rebuilding process. Besides, he still had the no-trade. In my mind this was the best they could do given the bind Hendry put the team in

  • Coachdon

    Hey, cheer up! At least the Cubs got a new center for the basketball team after trading the 6’7″ Marshall…Oh wait, they play baseball…

    • cubtex

      If you put Torreyes and Sappelt together you get one Chris Volstad :)

  • Anthony

    still waiting for Theo to sign Marla Hooch for RF

    what a hitter!

    • paulcatanese

      Anthony, all I ever hear mentioned with the Cubs is Theo, are there any others that make decisions, if not why did they sign all of those suits?

  • BD

    Epstein –“Bryan LaHair is our first baseman” 

    I think that the Cubs almost have to get Fielder to play first. If we are going to see Castro continue to progress as a hitter, who on the current roster is going to protect him in the line up? There are not that many impact bats left on the free agent market and even if they signed Cespedes he is still unproven at the major league level. If some how the Cubs were able to deal Soriano, is LaHair a good enough play LF defensively? I guess after Soriano anything is an upgrade…

    Really glad to see the Cubs were able to trade Big Z and not just outright release him. There is no way he could walk back into that locker room. Getting Volstad and 3 million was a gift from the Marlins in my opinion. Either way the Cubs would have been paying him to play elsewhere this season, at least we got something in return. 

  • paulcatanese

    Theo  is just a young whipersnapper. Good looking,has all his hair,president of a major league ballclub, and unlimited power
    with all decisions, and a millionare to boot…. dont like this guy.:)

  • 43hopping

    5 months ago everybody was saying get rid of Z no matter what the cost. Today these people are complaining because of this trade.

    Just as in the past when Sammy had to go or when Bradley had to go the time had come and Z had to go no matter the cost or return.

    This and/or the Marshall deal will not devalue a Garza deal or open the Cubs to a fleecing by other teams.

    The Z trade was just getting rid of a player they don’t want on their team i.e Sosa or Bradley.

    The Marshall deal was trading a one year contract for players under team control for more years.

  • cc002600

    I am shocked people on here are criticizing this trade.  They are going to lose 90+ games with or w/o Z. Personallly, I could care less what they got in return. He is gone. That’s all that matters. Addition by subtraction.  AND they saved $3M. GOOD RIDDANCE !

    The guy is a nutjob, who’s not very good, and making $18M. What the hell do you REALLY think you were going to get ?????????  That’s the very definition of ZERO VALUE.

    Are you kidding me ?

    The only reason the cubs found someone to take him is b/c Ozzie is his little buddy.  Otherwise, NO ONE would take this idiot. 

  • KevininSandiego


    If you were listening to Roundtrip make sure you put in your report about Marlins beat report said about still interested in Garza.

    • Neil

      Kevin, I heard Joe Frisaro on Roundtrip but I was not in a position to take notes … sorry. I don’t see how the Marlins would match up with what the Cubs want for Garza.

      • KevininSandiego

        I could see a 3 team deal, Theo has done a good job with those in the Pass.

        • Aaron

          you should see my post from earlier today. I outlined a Marlins-Tigers-Cubs 3 way deal that made sense for all parties involved.

          Now that the Marlins acquired Zambrano though, it might not make sense anymore, as I had Porcello and Oliver going their way.

  • ClubabbcCubsFans

    What are the Cubs doing? Excited when Theo came over but the Cubs are 100 loss team they way they sit now.  Gave away alot and got nothing worth anything in return. Rickitt, open up the checkbook and sign Fielder or sell team to Cuban who will bring a winner to Chicago within 2 years.  he is not afraid to spend money. This team looks awful going into spring training. No pitching,no power.  I hope it gets better before opening day. Excitment has gone away at a time we look forward to another Cubs season. What are they doing? Why sign Theo if you are going to try and win with nothing?

  • Demitri

    Soriano’s next hopefully. Theo has to make a big move to help the team in the future, so Jorge Soler is in my opinion must come here or at least Cespedes

    • Anthony

      Soler is not MLB ready, not close, and Centipede is NO

  • Carlron47

    glad he is gone nowto get rid of soriano

  • cubs57

    its going to be fun watching new faces in  chi. maybe we can compete with the stl cards now