Right-hander Carlos Zambrano hung up his cleats back in 2014, but he returned to professional baseball last season with the Chicago Dogs of the independent American Association. That comeback didn’t lead to a new opportunity in the majors, though, and now Zambrano says he’s done for good, per Carrie Muskat.
The fiery Zambrano, now 38, threw 61 innings with the Dogs last season. He posted a bloated 5.16 ERA over that span, though he did manage 7.5 strikeouts against 2.5 walks per nine. None of that was enough to put Zambrano back on the big league radar, however.
At his best, the man known as Big Z was one of the majors’ most effective starters. The longtime Cub, a three-time All-Star and someone who once pitched a no-hitter, was particularly good from 2003-10. He racked up 1,548 innings during that stretch, ranked 10th among starters in fWAR (28.7) and recorded a 3.42 ERA/3.89 FIP.
Also a former Marlin, with whom he concluded his MLB playing days in 2012, Zambrano put up a 3.66 ERA/4.01 FIP with 7.52 K/9, 4.13 BB/9 and a 48.4 percent groundball rate in almost 2,000 innings at the sport’s highest level.
Not to be forgotten, Zambrano’s also one of the most threatening hitters in the history of his position. Pitchers are often automatic outs, but not Zambrano, who totaled 24 home runs and batted .238/.248/.388 across 748 plate appearances.
Sucks he never made it back, the Braves used to always crush him!! lol…
On a more serious note, I definitely give the man credit for even attempting to make a real comeback. It’s unfortunate he couldn’t get another shot, but much like Palmero’s comeback, I never expected him to ever make it back, sadly..
Is Palmero still trying to comeback?
Does it matter? I mean we all know he’s not gonna make it back…
Side note: it is a cool story but let’s be real though it was never gonna happen
It’s not going to happen, but i’d like to track where he is, kind of like Kacy Clemens who a watched in U.T a few years ago. He was drafted by the blue jays a few years ago, and i’ve been tracking his progress since.
Good. He wasn’t a nice guy.
I take it you’ve met him.
So wonderful you think so lowly about lauded millionaires while you continue to be poor and faceless for the rest of your life.
@ bream & radio. Zambrano was a hothead and once even assaulted his own catcher (Michael Barrett). Use something called goggle to find clips of that. So yeah. Not a nice guy.
He ain’t done! This has Dumpster Divin’ Theo written all over it
You beat me to it!
Dumpster divin’ Theo…
How can you beat yourself to it? You used one of your accounts so you really can’t say that…
Oh they beat themselves all the time, especially when they can’t repair their blow up dolls.
A Dempster dive may be worth a reunion.
A Dempster dive might be worth a reunion.
Enjoy retirement Big Z
I enjoyed when he attempted to take his belt off while being restrained during a “brawl” vs the Padres, presumably to use it as a weapon.
I regret never getting to see his finishing move!
Has to be the tiger driver 91
He was a very good pitcher during his prime and could have been even better if he learned how to control his emotions. Kind of hard to throw strikes when you’re more focused on wanting to throw blows. RIP!
Ryan The Riot Theriot
He was a lot of fun to watch when I was growing up. He certainly had a temper, but he was an extremely passionate player. It didn’t matter if he was pitching or batting, every aspect of his game mattered to him. I find that to be admirable and I appreciate what he did as a Cub.
Could have seen him as an assistant to the head mascot for some mascot needing franchise that’s about it
Maybe a faceless franchise like the Tigers.
He could have been useful during the Astros trash can/water cooler banging
He could move the on-deck circle for Beltre.
He hit 24 HRs? Dude should have went Rick Ankiel and came back to DH a little. Ohtani-lite.
He was one of my favorite players to watch. I remember him stealing a base and laughing for about five minutes.
and according to bbr he made 100 mil+ in earnings. good for him.
That’s too bad — it would have been a cool story if he had been able to make it back. Obviously he wasn’t even really remotely good enough even in Independent Ball but still – would have been a cool, feel good, story.
This news sucked I was hoping he could lose 10 lbs pitch until he’s 60 and be Bartolo JR. Did you see him in his comeback?
So does this mean Zambrano is still available for Piniella to start in Game 4 or not?
This is my favourite comment ever.
The guy was a jerk. He was the Antonio Brown of baseball. Good riddance.
And you’re clearly the Cletus the Slacked Jawed Yokel of commenters.
The Antonio Brown of baseball? Based on the time of your post only, I can make a pretty solid guess the bar that you were at had WiFi.
Lol. That was funny. But the temper tantrums Zambrano had just got tiring. Had talent at his peak, but the attitude was awful.
I don’t remember Big Z being investigated for sexual assault or quitting on his team.
the cheating going on in MLB is epic at many levels.
Look at some stats, say for Danny Santana, E. Escobar, Cahna, etc having career years at age 30-32?? Sorry, there is way more than the ‘juiced ball theory’ at work here.
A lot you’re throwing around. You got any proof? Wait, this is a rumor site. In that case: Gigorilla cheats on his wife.
Ms. Tipsey — do you look at stats, or just shoot off your mouth when you get home from the bar?
Try doing a little research — it was way more than the juiced ball this last year.
Front runner for Mets manager??
Should have just focused on coming back as a DH/first baseman.
Always over Big Z. Dude was a beast on the mound
Didn’t he retire early because he wanted to be a farmer? I remember him being bitter too. With not being around MLB and in his mid-30’s, he didn’t have much chance at a comeback.
Saw him play a game for the Dogs. He was having a lot of fun. He also did some DH and pinch hitting for them
I never really like him. Kinda a drama queen
He’d never make it in the era of shirt buzzers, sadly
Z’s most famous line……. “We stinks”
In Z last game……he ended his career with beating up his Catcher in the dugout !
Z lost zip on pitches…..it was Heyward who teed off on him on Opening Day.
Randy Red Sox
Surprised the Red Sox didn’t sign him to a M/L deal given the pennies they are spending this off season.
Big pitcher, small head. Hit too many batters in retaliation. Good riddance.
All the water coolers will rest safely now
Surprised the Mariners didn’t offer him a deal. Might as well have
One of my all time favorite players.
Zambrano sounds like he should be in scarface with al pacino
Good, nothing but a crybaby and a bum.