Money Not Buying Zambrano's Love

Cubs put $91.5 million man on Restricted List until after All-Star break

By Max Gershberg
|  Monday, Jun 28, 2010  |  Updated 7:45 PM CDT
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Chicago Cubs 2010 Roster

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Zambrano has temper tantrums.

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Some people out there believe that money can buy love. However, in the case of Carlos Zambrano and the Cubs, money isn’t buying love, happiness, or productivity on the baseball diamond.

Zambrano and his $91.5 million contract have provided yet another headache for the Cubs organization, this time in the form of a heated confrontation with popular veteran Derrek Lee in the dugout Friday at U.S Cellular Field.

This is the same highly paid "ace" that punched catcher Michael Barrett in the face in 2007 and thrashed a Gatorade machine in a fit of rage last season. Yet, this latest act may have been Zambrano's last in a Cubs uniform.

Cubs General Manager Jim Hendry on Monday took action, banishing Zambrano to the Restricted List while he undergoes psychological treatment with doctors in New York.

Perhaps more telling than the punishment itself -- technically a paid hiatus -- was Hendry's harsh words and visibly frustrated demeanor.

Hendry is hoping the treatment will "eradicate the problems" and help Zambrano "take care of some deficiencies."

For a second one may have mistakenly thought he was offering thoughts on the career of Lindsay Lohan, not that of the former gem in his starting rotation.

Zambrano will be away from the Cubs until at least July 15, when the team returns to action following the All-Star Break. Even then, it is uncertain whether Cubs coaches, players and executives even want him back.

After all, Zambrano had time to grab dinner with Ozzie Guillen Friday night, but reportedly failed to return his teammates' phone calls throughout the weekend.

Zambrano will continue to collect checks during his time away, but it's safe to assume that his boss is looking for a way to stop writing them.

Big Z's massive contract may be difficult to move and if he remains a Cub, Zambrano's likely destination is the bullpen.

Zambrano has been a Cub for his entire career, but the honeymoon between the two parties is a distant memory and the marriage has been a rocky one at best. Now looking back at what the money failed to deliver over time, the Cubbies may be wishing they had gotten a prenup.

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