Kap's Corner

Carlos Zambrano Moves to the Bullpen

Lou Piniella has just informed us that he is making a major change to the Cubs pitching staff by moving Carlos Zambrano to the bullpen as a bridge to closer Carlos Marmol. Stunning news but when you stop and think about it you can see the rationale because Zambrano has a good stuff and if he is mentally into the move it could work.

A critical review of the Cubs and their slow start will be up later.... 

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3 Comments

Linda N. said:

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wow. That is really surprising. It does make sense though. Hopefully he wasn't too flipped out about this. Has a team's #1 starter even been "demoted" to the bullpen?

FiveOutsToGo said:

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NO. If you really think about it you can't see the rationale. Only if you've got a ridiculous vendetta against a guy would you think that replacing 100 innings of Zambrano with 100 innings of Gorzelanny would be a good idea.

This is a move of epically stupid proportions.

NEO1 said:

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Kap, this is a move that is beyond dumb, baseball and business wise. First off, while I agree with you when you criticize Zambrano for not pitching up to his big contract and as the ace of the staff I disagree when you state that his job is to win games. Starting pitchers have very little control on the outcome of the game. They can't control how many runs are on the board except whent they are batting and they can't control what the bullpen does. People have criticized Zambrano for his 9 win season and say he was awful. This is not true if you look closer at his statistics, his value over replacement player last year was 3.6 according to fangraphs.com and was his best year in terms of value since 2006. 16 out of his 28 starts were quality starts. When a starting pitcher gives their team a quality start, that team has about a 70% chance of winning the game. Even if Zambrano goes out and throws 80 perfect innings of relief, the Cubs are less likely to win as many games with him as a starting pitcher having an average statistical Zambrano season. Also to echo FiveOutsToGo, you are essentially taking away 100+ innings from Carlos and giving them to pitchers that are not as good. For this move to work, Zambrano not only has to succeed in his new role but the 5 starting pitchers in the rotation at the end of the year need to be better than an average Carlos Zambrano season. Also, from a business aspect, what team with world series aspirations pays 18 million dollars to a 8th inning set up relief pitcher? Thanks, love CTL and keep up the good work Kap.

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