According to a report from Paul Sullivan in the Chicago Tribune, “Carlos Zambrano may play out the season unless he gets a Zito-like contract.” Zambrano is looking for a 6 to 7-year deal worth on the average of $18 million a year. Jim Hendry’s position is not to be envied during these negotiations. If Hendry pays Zambrano what the market says he is worth….he will be criticized. If he lets Zambrano walk at the end of the season, he will be crucified. Several reports over the weekend indicated Zambrano wanted to have a new contract completed before the start of spring training but with time running out, Paul Sullivan puts the odds at 50-50 that “Zambrano plays out the season.”
Michael Barrett will be a free agent at the end of the season but according to Sullivan he realizes Hendry has more to worry about right now and stated his only concerns are to win the World Series. Barrett is apparently seeking a 4-year deal.