Cubs Make Carlos Zambrano Available

The Cubs have made it clear to other teams that Carlos Zambrano is available, according to's Buster Olney (via Twitter). If you thought Roy Oswalt and Dan Haren had a lot remaining on their contracts, take a look at what the Cubs owe Big Z: he'll earn $6.8MM this year, $17.9MM next year, $18MM in 2012 and, possibly, a $19.25MM vesting option in 2013.

Zambrano will make at least $42.7MM more before his contract expires, and he hasn't been pitching like an ace. As usual, the big right-hander is getting lots of strikeouts (8.6 K/9) and allowing lots of walks (4.0 BB/9), but his ERA is 5.66 in 2010. Zambrano is now working his way through anger issues and back to the majors. He recently apologized for the dugout tirade that landed him on the restricted list.

Given teams' reluctance to take on payroll, the Cubs would have to absorb part of the contract in any deal. It seems far more likely that the team will hold onto Zambrano for now, since he makes so much money and has not impressed at the major league level this season.