Carlos Zambrano Fantasy Baseball Pitcher

Carlos Zambrano is entertaining for both fans and opponents to watch. Fans love to watch his emotional outbursts on the mound, keeping fan interest high. Opponents hate him for the same reason, though they enjoy when Carlos Zambrano famously loses his cool during the tough stretch of the game.

Control is a continuing problem for Carlos Zambrano. With a three-quarters delivery, he will probably never have the mechanics to have pinpoint accuracy. This leads to a high numbers of walks. The saving grace is that Zambrano's motion creates a sinking effect on his fastballs, forcing opponents to hit ground balls into a lot of double plays. All of his pitches have movement of one sort or another, which keep opponents off balance.

Fantasy Baseball Pitcher Carlos Zambrano

The balls' movement combined with a fastball in the 96 to 97 M.P.H. range gives Zambrano the talent to one day challenge for a Cy Young Award. The problem is maintaining his composure through a full season.

Control on the mound isn't the only problem. Zambrano has had several incidents with teammates, the most famous being a fistfight he had in the dugout with his catcher earlier this season.

When Michael Barrett, then a Cubs catcher, committed two errors on one play, Zambrano melted down on the mound. After giving up the 1 unearned run, Zambrano went on to give up 6 earned runs and was run out of the game in the middle innings. Sure enough, he called out Barrett in the dugout, which caused a scuffle between the battery mates in front of the WGN cameras. The scene was broadcast on ESPN for days.

Zambrano punched his teammate, sending him to the hospital for stitches. The next day, Carlos admitted he was in the wrong. Not long after, the Cubs traded Barrett to the San Diego Padres. A strong young pitcher's more important than a veteran catcher any day.

(In Zambrano's defense, this wasn't Barrett's first physical confrontation. He had two stare downs with Roy Oswalt, as well as a confrontation with White Sox catcher, A.J. Pierzynski, where he A.J. for running over him at the plate.)

It is expected that the Cubs will try to sign Zambrano to a long term deal. Zambrano has stated he wants a contract around $80 million, similar to the one that Barry Zito signed. Whether the Cubs, about to be sold, will sign on for such a huge extension is uncertain. Zambrano's sometime instability might be a further impediment.

Career Stats

That being said, Carlos Zambrano is a solid power pitcher in his prime. So far as fantasy baseball goes, any owner would want him on their team. In 2007, he has a 3.83 ERA with an 11-7 record and 114 strikeouts. Those strikeouts are always a huge bonus in fantasy baseball, and Zambrano should finish with well over 200 K's.

Zambrano has been highly consistent when it comes to wins over the last four years. He has posted 13, 16, 14 and 16 wins from 2003-06. His strikeout total has increased every year, peaking with 210 in 2006. At his current pace, Zambrano would set personal bests in wins and strikeouts in 2007.

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