Happy Birthday, Z!

Carlos Zambrano turns 24 today. So here's a birthday wish to our favorite web-surfing, muttering, gesticulating, switch-hitting, complete game-throwing, goateed behemoth of a perpetual-Cy Young Award contender. We Love Ya, Z. For some birthday reminiscences, how about these.... Remember when we wondered who would be better, Zambrano or Cruz? Remember the first time we discovered Z was a switch-hitter? ember Z retiring Barry Bonds in an especially tense series in 2003, Z getting all excited, and Barry sulking about it? Here's a question: what should we get Z for his birthday? (photo from http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/mlb/photo/photogallery/2003_2nd_half_moments)

Comments

(another p.s.: join my small-ball style fantasy rotisserie league at yahoo. league ID 352533 and password rodbeck)

(I'll stop shilling, now.)

Maybe we should send him a printout of all the posts of everyone bitching at him about him getting tossed from too many games....

How about some run support for his next start?

Remember last year when Z had a no-hitter through five, and led off the bottom of the fifth legging out a bunt single?

Happy B-Day Z.

''I'm a horse. They'd have to kill me [to miss a start]. I have to have my arm explode.'' -Z

i was at a game vs col where z homered to center, he went nuts rounding first, and preston wilson lost the ball in the sun, and put his arms upas it wne over his head

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A solid outing from the bullpen? A W? God, I love this guy.

The moment I remember from that series, T, was zambrano catching a soft liner back up the middle with two outs and the bases juiced. I was at that game, it's one of my favorite games I've seen (it's the only time I've seen the opposing left fielder heckled more than the cubs bullpen from my former employer's seats halfway down the third base line).

anyway, Z gave a fist pump after he caught it (it was a pure adrenaline play) and Barry barked some crap back at him. Bonds: 0-1, 2BB (1IBB).

Retrosheet:
http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B07310CHN2...

I have an idea for a birthday present for Z:

A face picture of Jim Edmonds type to the catchers' chest protector.

Remember the triple that he hit last year? The one with the incredibly graceful dive into third?

I'll always laugh about that.

how bout a big bag of meat? Z is a f--king lion!

carlos zambrano is the man on this team. there are plenty of great players on the cubs squad this year, but for the next decade i believe this club will go as far as zambrano's arm takes them. he's that good, and that young.

god bless you carlos. god bless you.

I would get Z a nylon net for which would not chafe as much when Larry Rothschild has to ride his horse out to the mound to calm him down, and make the tranquilizer darts a little smaller too.

Zambrano is the man...keep wining el loco toro.

Z's best moment was that homer he hit against Wade Miller at Houston in 2003. It was the turning point of the season.

(I remember being pissed that Dusty let Z hit for himself, too.)

Oh wow, the slide he slid on that triple last year, LOL!

I recall Jon Miller (giants pbp guy) being very perturbed about zambrano's "festive demonstration!" after getting bonds on that line-out.

WAs it a lineu-out, and I'm mis-remembering it as a strike out, or were there two different instances? I'm pretty darn sure there was also a K.

That was also the series, if I recall, that one of our SPs plunked Barry.

But yeah, I remember Jon Miller being all upset. Now, of course, he celebrates Zambrano's zest.

Hey, there could be some endorsement opportunities there.... Proctor and Gamble need to think of a Zambrano's Zest line for their soap. That commercial would rule!

we should get him voice recognition software for his computer, so he doesnt have to type

Trans: Retrosheet says that's the only game Z pitched against SF that year, and that was his only AB (two BBs).

It's so comforting to know there are enterprising researchers out there to compensate for my porous memory. Thanks!

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  • brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.

    crunch 30 min 44 sec ago view
  • Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.

    VirginiaPhil 5 hours 59 sec ago view
  • video of Maddon.

    http://www.espn.com/espn/now?nowId=21-0561343809737202839-4

    always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.

    Rob G. 20 hours 11 min ago view
  • from Muskat:

    #Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs

    Rob G. 20 hours 17 min ago view
  • http://www.espn.com/espn/now?nowId=21-0561339391889382475-4

    Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.

    Rob G. 20 hours 22 min ago view
  • great defense

    Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.

    Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.

    I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.

    Rob G. 20 hours 33 min ago view
  • If all the starters have FIP > ERA, is that luck or good defense?

    Craig A. 20 hours 45 min ago view
  • #Cubs plummet to 19-5 in August.

    Fun with FIP

    • J. Hammel   3.07 ERA/4.27 FIP (3.68 FIP last year)
    • J. Arrieta     2.62 ERA/3.05 FIP (2.35 FIP last year)
    • J. Lester     2.81 ERA/3.67 FIP (2.92 FIP last year)
    • K. Hendricks  2.19 ERA/3.37 FIP (3.36 FIP last year)
    • J. Lackey     3.41 ERA/3.72 FIP (3.57 FIP last year with Cards)
    Rob G. 21 hours 10 min ago view
  • zastyryzryzryzny put in 3.2ip 1h 0bb 3k

    he's great when his control is "on"...problem is it's rarely "on" consistently. he could vault up the cubs prospect list if he ever gets better with that aspect of his game.

    crunch 21 hours 50 min ago view
  • JD's take was just trying to get in a lefty to better deal with mostly lefty Dodgers lineup.

    My second thought was what you came up with. My first thought was he was trying to light a fire under Hammel.

    Jackstraw 23 hours 2 min ago view
  • Maybe he was trying to spare him another brutal road start? NY, Colorado...

    billybucks 23 hours 19 min ago view
  • joe got a pitcher up for hammel at nearly the 1st sign of trouble in the 3rd...pulled after 2.1

    not injured and though it wasn't his day so far he wasn't looking like a pure disaster.

    really short leash on him. zastryznzryzryny in.

    crunch 23 hours 23 min ago view
  • Russell and Soler can attest that Urias has a pretty good curve/slider - two big strikeouts looking to get out of that jam in the first.

    Eric S 1 day 8 min ago view
  • Classic Scully - great stuff.

    Thank God we'll still have Hawk next season. (cricket cricket cricket)

    Eric S 1 day 4 hours ago view
  • Here's Scully's call on Bryant's 10th-inning homer:

    "And it's a long fly ball, a mean fly ball, and a gone fly ball."

    VirginiaPhil 1 day 6 hours ago view
  • When the Cubs were the old, hundred-year Cubs, one bad hop did not undo their opponents.

    VirginiaPhil 1 day 6 hours ago view