Olney’s Latest: Giants, Zambrano, Fielder, Orioles

In today's Insider-only blog entry, ESPN.com's Buster Olney ranks baseball's most irreplaceable players, with Albert Pujols and Adrian Gonzalez heading his list. Here are a few other highlights from the column:

  • Responding to Henry Schulman's San Francisco Chronicle piece about the Giants' need for bullpen help, Olney identifies two roadblocks. According to general managers, the relief market is "very, very thin." On top of that, a group of GMs polled by Olney named Brian Sabean as the most difficult GM to trade with.
  • The Cubs have tried to deal with Carlos Zambrano's past outbursts because of his talent and his $91.5MM contract. After the latest blow-up though, it appears the club has run out of patience. According to Olney, there's "an overriding perception within the organization" that Zambrano hasn't cared about living up to his end of the deal.
  • Given the non-existent extension negotiations between Prince Fielder and the Brewers, Olney says the team has two options: trade Fielder and receive a lesser return than fans would expect, or keep the 26-year-old and try to re-sign him after 2011.
  • Buck Showalter had a very good interview with the Orioles, who will also interview Eric Wedge this week (Twitter link).


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13 Comments on "Olney’s Latest: Giants, Zambrano, Fielder, Orioles"


BoSoxSam
5 years 2 months ago

is it rude of me to ask someone with insider to tell me the list of 15 players? I’m pretty curious, and clearly, I don’t have insider, so if someone would do that, I’d appreciate it :)

5 years 2 months ago

What can the Cubs even do with Zambrano? Best case, and unlikely scenario is an Alex Rios type move…but who would even take him?

Jason_F
5 years 2 months ago

I’m curious why other GMs find Sabean difficult to deal with, but, alas, not curious enough to pay for the privilege of being an Insider. Oh well…

ReverendBlack
5 years 2 months ago

“Given the non-existent extension negotiations between Prince Fielder and the Brewers, Olney says the team has two options: trade Fielder and receive a lesser return than fans would expect, or keep the 26-year-old and try to re-sign him after 2011.”

…Deep Thoughts…

Jason_F
5 years 2 months ago

This is a horrible comparison and in no way are these two situations parallel. The main difference being that all goalies do this to prevent the tactical mistake that was just made from happening again (and the noise on the world cup fields is deafening), while virtually no other pitchers in baseball call out their teammates by screaming at them in the dugout after they themselves were the one responsible for just having given up 4 runs in the previous inning. Also, Howard’s teammates have nothing but good things to say about him as a person. Something tells me that isn’t the case for Zambrano. Terrible, terrible comparison and you should really be ashamed for trying to defend a lunatic like Zambrano’s actions.

Infield Fly
5 years 2 months ago

Strictly regarding Zambrano: the “immature” tag is not a case of spin. A team will love the teammate who wants to motivate and fire up his team – even if he is a bit tough on them at times. But with Zambrano, everything is all about him. When things don’t go his way he launches into tirades, tantrums, and even outright violence – regardless of who’s affected, or when. Like a spoiled child, his sole concern is what HE wants – to the point where his team seems to take second place with him. He has behaved in this manner since at least 2006, and for a team that almost chronically underperforms despite being loaded with talent, these outbursts inject a negativity into the clubhouse that can only further erode morale. Nobody benefits from this…a fact the Cubs finally seem prepared to concede.

TwinsVet
5 years 2 months ago

The comparison is flawed because Howard actually has talent.

55saveslives
5 years 2 months ago

I don’t think anyone will see it like you do…Zambrano has been borderline psychotic a number of times.

Tim Howard has been known and reported in a yahoo story as the player that keeps everyone calm. I don’t know where you get info about Howard “cursing” his players.

Jason_F
5 years 2 months ago

“Your post is horribly wrong. Mainly, because you don’t see things like I do.”

Closed-mindedness. What a great philosophy to have.

Funny how Howard’s teammates all love the guy and Zambrano’s were ready to throw down with him on Friday. This world cup must be your first soccer viewing experience because the phenomenon of the yelling goalie is nothing new. Are you a relative of Zambrano’s or something? Because it’s pretty well known that his antics are tired and juvenile.

ThePaulCrew
5 years 2 months ago

Howard also has tourette syndrome so sometimes he cant help his cursing.

5 years 2 months ago

If it’s news, I want to hear it. Even more so if it’s something I wouldn’t otherwise see, as in a paysite. Granted it’s not the full story, but at least MLBTR let’s me know generally what’s up.

Jason_F
5 years 2 months ago

I actually don’t mind it one bit. I realize that I need to pay for certain information…I’m just not willing to do it. If I was an insider, which I’m sure a lot of MLBTR readers are, I would totally want the link to be there. MLBTR has to respect the information that ESPN is charging for and they are never too revealing with what the insider info is. I think they do a great job of straddling the fence on this one.

Jason_F
5 years 2 months ago

It’s well known to anyone with the ability to watch him play. Step up your reading comprehension…what I referred to being “well known” was that “his antics are tired and juvenile.” I don’t need the media to tell me because I can see with my own eyes that he took out his frustrations with himself out on his own teammates. Lest you forget, he has been prone to temper tantrums, breaking bats over his knee, punishing drink dispensers, losing his mind when calls don’t go his way, etc. All of these things show up on raw video. No media influence necessary. It’s a tired act and obviously Cubs’ management agrees. I don’t get your obsession with defending this guy. And of course you can get suspended for yelling; it depends on what you were yelling. Insubordination is an absolutely suspendable offense, if that’s what it was, and often all that would be is a lot of yelling.

Btw, did you speak to Manny Ramirez’s and Milton Bradley’s teammates to find that stuff out or did you possibly get it from some media outlet that relayed it to you? Chances are it’s the latter.