Have the Cubs become the new bad boys of baseball? Sure looks that way, Carlos Zambrano got ejected in colorful fashion today as the Cubs won their second in a row. Z’s departure came after throwing a wild pitch only to lose a close call at the plate (from my angle the runner was safe by a hair, getting his left hand around Zambrano’s block and tag.) After that was the ensuing argument, Carlos and the umpire made incidental contact and the ejection occurred; Zambrano earned a likely suspension by symbolically ejecting the umpire, throwing the ball to the left field warning track and slamming his mitt on the way to the dugout. After reaching the dugout it was time to take his fury out on the Gatorade dispenser and go to the clubhouse for a debriefing with Cubs’ anger management counselor Lou Piniella.
This makes two days this week where the Gatorade machine has come out on the short end of a disagreement with a Cubs pitcher (the first being with Ryan Dempster.) The Cubs are still waiting to hear from MLB’s chief disciplinarian Bob Watson about Ted Lilly’s ejection and comments earlier this week. And we all know about Milton Bradley’s recent suspension and comments about the quality of officiating.
- So my first question to the readership is simple: Are the recent spate of incidents constructive or destructive to the team’s morale and performance?
The Shoes of the Fisherman rip
I do not want to see an ongoing string of Cubs being tossed but I think the outbursts come at a time when the Cubs can benefit from a little excitement. A few games into the losing streak it appeared as though they were sleep-walking; they’re sure not now!
- My second question involves whether or not Zambrano should or will get a suspension.
From what I saw the ump made incidental contact first but Z’s actions after the ejection will probably cost him a start (and rightly so.) And some fines. And some repair costs on what looks to be a rather expensive Gatorade dispenser – PepsiCo can’t be too happy with the abuse that their Gatorade brand is getting from the Cubs starters…perhaps they should move that machine away from the clubhouse entrance and put a traditional water cooler in it’s place. This Cubs team is starting to show some spunk!