Ozzie Guillen, Carlos Zambrano and the pursuit of happiness

Following his dugout tirade on Friday that led to a suspension, Cubs’ starter Carlos Zambrano went to dinner with White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, who apparently gave the pitcher some sage advice on how to handle the situation.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

”I asked what happened,” Guillen said. ”He told me exactly what happened. … He was upset with a lot of the team. That was it. I told him what to do, to wait a couple of days. He will do what I tell him to do. Face it like a man. Don’t turn [his] back on this problem. … Go out, put your face on it and move on.

”What are they going to do to him? Trade, release or suspend him? At least when you face it like a man and admit you were wrong, everyone moves on. He didn’t kill anyone. He just made one mistake. We can’t criticize the kid for that. That’s the way he is. … We’ve got to respect people’s ways, and that’s the intensity this kid brings.”

”What are they going to do to him? Trade, release or suspend him?”

Well, yeah. This isn’t the first time Zambrano has flown off the reservation and chances are, it wasn’t the last either. He could be a great person off the field, but he still has to take responsibility for his actions on it. And he doesn’t get a free pass just because he’s an intense guy.

The other problem, of course, is that he has been awful on the mound this year. Whether he has pitched every fifth day or come out of the pen, Zambrano hasn’t gotten the job done. So when you throw a situation like the other night into the mix, where he’s berating teammates and not acting professional, it compounds the situation.

It’s great that Guillen is standing up for a player (albeit, a player on an opposing team), but the Cubs had every right to take action by suspending Zambrano and whatever they do with him from here on out will likely be justified. Considering how much they’re paying him, they should be getting better on-field production or at the very least, someone that can control is temper.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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