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Zambrano Close To Five-Year Deal?

According to Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune, Carlos Zambrano announced yesterday that he's close to signing a five-year contract with the Cubs.  However, Sullivan's source says the two sides still have a long way to go and Zambrano has yet to receive a concrete offer.

Based on comments from Zambrano and Cubs GM Jim Hendry, the two parties seem to agree on a five-year length.  Capping at five instead of six or seven years is a huge win for the Cubs, even if they go up to $17MM annually.  Most likely, the sides will settle around five years and $80MM.  That'd be a significant loyalty discount for the Cubs.  On the other hand, Zambrano's deal would be on par with those of Roy Oswalt and Chris Carpenter



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