Former Chicago Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano eyes another comeback

(Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images) /

Looking to defy the odds and return to Major League Baseball, former Chicago Cubs hurler Carlos Zambrano is joining the Independent League Chicago Dogs.

Ichiro Suzuki and Bartolo Colon played until they were 45 and Tiger Woods just shocked the world over the weekend winning The Masters, so why can’t former Chicago Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano return to baseball?

According to Chicago Sun-Times Gordon Wittenmyer, the former Cubs ace has joined the Independent League Chicago Dogs. Zambrano broke the news to the team while visiting the club in Miami before Monday’s victory over the Marlins.

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Located in Rosemont, Impact Field, home of the Dogs, sits just 12 miles from Wrigley Field, where Big Z called home for 11 seasons. Zambrano hasn’t pitched professionally in the United States since 2013, in the big leagues since 2012. Not to mention, he’ll turn 38 in June.

It doesn’t take much thought to say the odds are against him in this comeback attempt. After all, he did attempt to make a comeback in und2018 in the Mexican League – to disappointing results. He says he’s taking the comeback serious this time aro.

According to Wittenmyer’s research, Zambrano hit as high as 89 mph with his fastball in the Mexican League. He later peaked at 94 mph in during winter ball in Venezuela last year.

‘I want to see if I can throw 95 again,’’ Zambrano said.

While the odds are not in his favor, I think most Cubs fans would love to see the passionate right-handed pitcher take the mound one more time. Zambrano is most known for being one of the key pieces to the Cubs’ playoff runs in 2007 and 2008, but also for his emotion displayed on the field.

His departure from the Cubs was ill-willed as he was suspended in 2011 after leaving the team following an ejection against the Atlanta Braves. He was later traded to the Miami Marlins, one of Theo Epstein’s first moves as the Chicago president of baseball operations.

I’m not sure Zambrano has much of a shot even advancing onto a minor league affiliate, but I’m certain the Dogs will see more bodies in the stands this season when Zambrano toes the rubber.

Chicago Cubs fans should be happy for him and wish him nothing but the best. Yes, he had some rough patches but he also gave us some memorable moments. The no-hitter in Milwaukee against the Houston Astros was one of the best-pitched games in club history and the neutral site makes the story even better.

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And despite his mishaps on the field with teammates (like punching Michael Barrett in the Cubs dugout) and run-ins with umpires, he was fun to watch pitch when things were going his way.