Results tagged ‘ Zambrano ’

Zambrano dealt to Marlins for RHP Chris Volstad

The Chicago Cubs continued to rebuild their pitching staff with the acquisition of Miami Marlins right-hander Chris Volstad for volatile righty Carlos Zambrano. Zambrano waived his no-trade clause and will join friend and countryman Ozzie Guillen in Miami after 11 seasons and 125 wins with the North Siders.

The dependable 25-year-old Volstad has a career record of 32-39 with a 4.59 ERA in parts of four major league seasons. The former first-rounder struggled in 29 starts with the Marlins last year, but finished strong after a brief demotion to Triple-A. Volstad, who will not be a free agent until after the 2014 season, joins Matt Garza, Ryan Dempster, Randy Wells and the newly acquired Travis Wood in the Cubs 2012 rotation.

Read the full press release below:

CHICAGO The Chicago Cubs today acquired right-handed pitcher Chris Volstad from the Miami Marlins for right-handed pitcher Carlos Zambrano and a cash consideration.

Volstad, 25, is 32-39 with a 4.59 ERA (298 ER/584.0 IP) in 103 major league appearances (102 starts) with the Marlins the last four seasons (2008-11).  The 6-foot-8, 230-pound righthander has made at least 29 starts for the Marlins each of the last three years, including a career-best 30 starts in 2010 when he went 12-9 with a 4.58 ERA (89 ER/175.0 IP).

Originally selected by the Marlins in the first round (16th overall) of the 2005 Draft out of high school, Volstad made his major league debut with the Marlins midway through the 2008 campaign at the age of 21, going 6-4 with a 2.88 ERA (27 ER/84.1 IP) in 15 big league outings, 14 as a starting pitcher his rookie season.  He made his first major league Opening Day roster in 2009 and went 9-13 with a 5.21 ERA (92 ER/159.0 IP) in 29 starts during his first full big league season that year.  Volstad followed up with his strongest full major league campaign in 2010.

Volstad went 5-13 with a 4.89 ERA (90 ER/165.2 IP) in 29 starts last year with the Marlins.  He finished strong by posting a 2.41 ERA (10 ER/37.1 IP) in his final six starts, allowing two earned runs or less in each of his final six outings while tossing at least six innings in five of those starts.  Volstad began the season with the big league club but was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans on July 23.  He was recalled to the big leagues on August 12 and, despite going winless, posted a 3.48 ERA (21 ER/54.1 IP) in nine starts upon his return to the majors.

A native of Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., Volstad graduated from Palm Beach Gardens High School in 2005.

Zambrano departs the Cubs with a 125-81 record and a 3.60 ERA (731 ER/1,826.2 IP) in 319 appearances, 282 as a starter, in 11 seasons (2001-11).  He went 9-7 with a 4.82 ERA (78 ER/145.2 IP) in 24 starts for the Cubs last year before being placed on the disqualified list on August 13, missing the remainder of the season.

Originally signed by the Cubs as a non-drafted free agent on July 12, 1997, Zambrano holds the franchise record with 23-career home runs as a pitcher.

Game 2 vs. Marlins

Soriano, LF
Theriot, SS
Bradley, RF
Lee, 1B
Johnson, CF
Soto, C
Miles, 2B
Fontenot, 3B
Harden, RHP

Left-hander Graham Taylor (0-1, 9.82 ERA) takes the hill for Florida.

Memorable moment

One of the most fun parts about Wrigley Field crowds comes when hearing the reaction to certain peripheral developments. We all remember the sudden cheers from last year’s postseason run when the out-of-town manual scoreboard would be updated with a favorable result against the Cards or Brewers.

Last night there was Carlos Zambrano stepping into the on-deck circle as a pinch-hitter in the ninth. “Z!” “Z!” “Z!” It’s Cubs fans’ version of word of mouth. And sure enough, with fans on their feet, Big Z struck a solid base hit up the middle.

The NBA’s April

There were several hundred people standing around the concourse TVs by the time the Bulls-Celtics game reached the second of three overtimes. What a finish. Congrats to Chicago’s basketball team for pushing an unbelievable first-round series to seven games.

From the Cubs Convention: Z talks no-hitter

zambrano convention.JPGIt was another jam-packed Cubs Convention weekend — meeting readers at the Vine Line booth in the exhibition hall, hosting sessions on online media and the farm system, and volunteering in the batting cages to demonstrate wheelchair softball with the RIC Cubs — and another great opportunity to get a pulse of the Chicago Cubs and our fanbase. Thanks to everyone who said hi and made it another special weekend!

In the midst of all that, I had the opportunity to listen to Saturday afternoon’s presentation on Carlos Zambrano’s no-hitter. Len Kasper moderated the discussion with Big Z and Cubs pitching coach Larry Rothschild.

One thing struck me most: After seeing the session with the 1984 Cubs earlier in the day, I realized that 25 years later, Big Z’s no-hitter now might be the defining moment for a new generation of Cubs fans. During the Q&A, several fans were on the verge of tears and relayed their stories of watching the game on TV or traveling on a whim to Milwaukee. The Carlos Zambrano no-hitter Vine Line cover received the most comments at our booth.

zambrano convention room.JPGWe all hope that Z’s no-no is not the peak of this Cubs era, but it is nice to see a new narrative that can sit alongside 1984 and 1969 at future Cubs Conventions.

Other notes from the session:

? Big Z was asked about keepsakes he had from the game. He replied, “My uniform, glove, shoes … I will have those in my house probably until I die.”

? There was an extensive discussion of how bullpen warm-ups translate to the game. Carlos had said that he felt great in the bullpen and that, when he heard the game would be played in Milwaukee, he knew the fans would make it feel like a home game. Larry said that he had really great, heavy stuff warming up. But both said that doesn’t necessarily translate into a good start …

Rothschild: “Sometimes, guys think they have good enough stuff if they throw well in the bullpen, so they don’t turn it up a level in the game.”

zambrano no hitter vl cover.JPGZambrano: “One day against Milwaukee, I was throwing 120 [mph] in the bullpen. [Everyone laughs.] Seriously. I was throwing my fastball nice and easy, and it was going, ‘HAHH! HAHH!’ And it was the shortest outing of my career. [Laughs.]”

? Len, who of course did a phenomenal job moderating the session, became the sideshow when one fan berated him for uttering the phrase “no-hitter” when exiting a late inning. Saying she has been watching games since 1945, she pleaded with him never to utter the phrase during an active one again. Larry agreed and was pleased to get some support on the point, as he and Len have been going back and forth on the idea of jinxing a no-hitter. Len tried to defend himself by saying, “Well, he threw it, didn’t he??”

? But the funniest moment came when a fan asked if Carlos was hoping to bat in the top of the ninth or if he wanted to be rested going into the last three outs. Carlos’ reply? “What do you think?”

— Sean Ahmed

Game 2: another opportunity

Everyone is getting geared up for Game 2 tonight. It’s a late start because of the TBS schedule, 8:37 p.m. Central, so we’ve been left anticipating this game all day.

Today’s lineups


Furcal, SS
Martin, C
Ramirez, LF
Ethier, RF
Loney, 1B
Kemp, CF
DeWitt, 2B
Blake, 3B
Billingsley, RHP


Soriano, LF
Theriot, SS
Lee, 1B
Ramirez, 3B
DeRosa, 2B
Edmonds, CF
Soto, C
Fukudome, RF
Zambrano, RHP

We’ll be talking to Lou at the bottom of the hour, so stay tuned for more.

Bullish on Z

Trailing by a game and facing the Dodgers’ most consistent pitcher in 2008, Big Z is going to be the Cubs’ leader and horse tonight. Here’s Carlos on postseason lessons learned, his health and pitching in October.

On postseason experience: You know, sometimes experience don’t count, you know? There’s people that have a lot of experience in the playoffs and still haven’t performed as good. Just, like I said, if you prepare and you attack the opponent and you come to the ballpark ready and you play good, you’re going to win that day.

On the key to having no-hit stuff tonight: Strike, first pitch, strike, and challenge the hitters. Sinker. If my sinker is working, everything will be different.

On his health: Yeah, I am. I’ve been playing catch and I’ve been feeling good. Everything is good for me. Just the fact that I wasn’t able to throw strikes in the situation that I have to throw strikes, that’s it.


Marquis performance

When Jason Marquis launched a grand slam over the rightfield wall last night, he became one of several Cubs who have reached personal or team milestones this season. In fact, it marked the second time in as many weeks that we tore up the milestones page in our postseason program … the last being for Carlos Zambrano’s no-hitter, replacing our mention of Milt Pappas being the last one to do it, 36 years ago.

Trivia question: Who was the last Cubs pitcher to hit a grand slam and how many years ago? Check the comments for the answer of whom Jason erased from our upcoming NLDS program.

More from Saturday

Vaughn.jpgVince Vaughn attended Saturday’s game, which ended with that great on-field celebration after the Cubs earned the National League Central championship. If you weren’t aware he was going to be there beforehand, you would have realized as soon as you heard the fans in the Terrace Reserved seating, going from leftfield to behind the plate, cheering wildly as he walked above them.

Vine Line columnist Jen Nowak spoke briefly with Vince and had the following to say:

“I first asked him what he was doing in Chicago. He replied that he lives in Chicago and that he was in town for the team, of course.

I spoke to him after he performed ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame,’ so I asked about what he thinks about his singing voice. He usually thinks its pretty good, he said … until he hears it. Though he did clarify that he doesn’t get nervous.

That’s about all we could discuss before fans swarmed him on the ramp!”

Sean Ahmed

Congrats, Big Z!

Some 24,000 lucky fans got to see Carlos Zambrano throw a no-hitter in the emergency game in Milwaukee tonight.

It’s the Cubs’ first no-hitter since Milt Pappas did it in the near-perfect game against the Padres 36 years ago.

Leave your comments on Carlos’ incredible performance below.

In so many words

Cubs team photographer Stephen Green was all over Yankee Stadium during the All-Star Game festivities and sends along these pictures:

Dempster Wood kids.jpg

Z home run derby.jpg

Piniella Zambrano Ramirez.jpg

Closing out the Reds

Theriot, SS
Fukudome, RF
Lee, 1B
Ramirez, 3B
Soto, C
Edmonds, CF
DeRosa, LF
Fontenot, 2B
Lilly, LHP

Right-hander Bronson Arroyo (6-7, 5.82) takes the hill for Cincinnati

In a pinch

After the always friendly Alan Trammell posted the lineup in the clubhouse, Big Z walked over and wrote his name in the “Extras” section. He would be our only switch-hitting pinch-hitter available today …

He’s No. 1

First-round pick Andrew Cashner signed his first professional contract at Wrigley Field this morning. He just got done touring the clubhouse, and a number of guys went up to him to welcome him to the organization. He’ll play some catch on the field and talk with the media before the game.

Check back tomorrow for Zach Martin’s full report on the signing.

— Sean Ahmed

Back home

Three people separately told me today that it feels like ages since the Cubs have been home. In fact, it’s been 12 days: June 26 against Baltimore. But they were in Chicago as recently as June 29, for the second leg of the Crosstown Series.

Lineup against the Reds today:

Theriot, SS
Fukudome, RF
Lee, 1B
Ramirez, 3B
Soto, C
Edmonds, CF
DeRosa, LF
Fontenot, 2B
Dempster, RHP

From the clubhouse

There were a lot of TV cameras in the clubhouse this afternoon — they are only allowed for night games — to interview the Cubs’ seven All-Stars.

Big Z talked about how he was excited to be representing the National League, though each player’s goal the whole time has just been to get wins.

When asked about CC “no periods anymore” Sabathia being dealt to the Brewers, he spun a positive that you will hear up and down the Cubs organization: “We don’t have to be good; we have to be great.” He said the biggest thing it needs to push the Cubs to do is be more consistent.

As for his work load coming back from injury and his great start against St. Louis, he’s setting his goal for tomorrow at doing his best to throw 80-100 pitches in seven innings.

Moment of silence

The Cubs will honor the late Richard Francis, a local police officer shot and killed in the line of duty late last week, on the field at 6:50. Commanders from the 19th and 23rd district and some of his closest colleagues will be in attendance.

The news last week shook many around the ballpark, and we hope you’ll join us in honoring his service to the public.

Game 2 vs. White Sox

Prior to today’s game, Carlos Zambrano was placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to June 19. The team announced yesterday that test results indicated a strain in his right shoulder. The injury is not considered serious, but post-game discussions led to the decision to hold him back from his next couple starts. He’ll be eligible to come off the DL during the early July series at St. Louis.

To replace him, the team recalled infielder/outfielder Eric Patterson. Normally, Patterson would not have been eligible to come back until June 27, 10 days after he was last sent to the minors. But in the case of injury, anybody may be recalled immediately.

Today’s lineups

Fukudome, RF
Patterson, LF
Lee, 1B
Ramirez, 3B
Edmonds, CF
Fontenot, 2B
Soto, C
Theriot, SS
Marquis, RHP

For the White Sox:

Cabrera, SS
Pierzynski, C
Quentin, LF
Dye, RF
Swisher, 1B
Crede, 3B
Wise, CF
Ramirez, 2B
Contreras, RHP