With Ozzie Guillen out as the Miami Marlins manager and his bridges all but burned in two Major League cities, Carlos Zambrano is still trying to find work this upcoming season. Zambrano is still a free agent, but he has been pitching well in the Venezuelan Winter League.
As Jon Morosi of Fox Sports points out, Zambrano is pitching on a playoff team in the Winter League and gave up just one run last night, but that does not necessarily translate into Major League interest.
Carlos Zambrano, still unsigned, pitched 5 innings of one-run ball for Magallanes in Venezuelan Winter League playoffs tonight.
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) January 24, 2013
Zambrano's issues have been well-documented. He has a temper, he quits on his team, and he is injury-prone. Last season, Zambrano pitched in 35 games for the Marlins, but he only made 20 starts. The 31-year old posted a 4.49 ERA. Last season marked just the second time Zambrano spent significant time in the bullpen.
Zambrano battled back stiffness last season, which may have contributed to his poor numbers. However, Zambrano's numbers have been in decline for a few years now. He spent 11 seasons with the Chicago Cubs before coming to Miami. In Chicago, Zambrano was both spectacular and combustable. He once declared that he would retire after being ejected from a game.
Any team that signs Zambrano must be willing to put up with the side show. They also must understand that with each passing year nagging injuries like back stiffness and spasms can turn into so much more.
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