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Big Z Is Miami's Problem Now

By Chuck Sudo in News on Jan 5, 2012 3:00PM

The rumors have been stewing for months. Last night the Cubs finally pulled the trigger and traded Carlos Zambrano's talents, his mercurial temper and his me-first attitude to South Beach, and they'll be eating a major portion of the $18 million owed Zambrano in the process.

Reports are that Zambrano has been traded to the Miami Marlins for underperforming pitching prospect Chris Volstad. Pending The Cubs will be paying $15 million of Big Z's salary this season, pending approval of the commissioner's office because of the money involved, and the trade has the approval of Zambrano.

Zambrano joins a Marlins team that will be managed by his friend and dinner companion Ozzie Guillen and former White Sox ace Mark Buehrle. The Marlins have been spending money like a drunken sailor on shore leave to rebuild the team into an World Series contender this offseason. In addition to signing Guillen and Buehrle and the trade for Zambrano, they signed Jose Reyes and Heath Bell and were players in the Albert Pujols Sweepstakes. The Marlins clubhouse also bears watching, with Guillen's mouth and Zambrano's penchant for acting a fool.

Volstad was a 2005 draft pick by the Marlins who hasn't panned out as a starter thus far in his major league career. The 6 feet 8 inch right-hander posted a 5-13 record and an ERA close to 5.00 last season and the Cubs control his rights until 2014.