Presently, Hendry is preparing to shop Zambrano
Seldom I am able to predict the future, but I can predict one thing: the next GROTA Roundtable will feature a question about which huge salary Hendry will trade away this winter - Soriano, Zambrano, or Fukudome.
It appears the correct answer will be: Big Angry Z.
People I know say that Hendry has been asked to broker a deal to send Zambrano away this winter. His September brilliance aside, Z is no longer someone the Cubs are choosing to depend on. And although the first question I have is "just WHO on the staff CAN they depend on anyway", I guess paying Randy Wells a half a million to be hit-or-miss is preferable to paying Zambrano 38 times as much to be just as undependable.
It is also my understanding that there are in fact several interested takers. If you believe Barry Rozner on the Daily Herald, there is even one team who is willing to take Z on AND assume his contract without sending us back their 2011 version of Silva the Hutt. Of course, this particular team is on Z's No-Trade List. The few teams that are not on the list that want him also want us to take their bad money back in return.
The Cubs are not willing to go "upside down" simply to rid themselves of the Stampeding Bull, though. They owe him 38 million; they are not going to take, say, 39 million of contract from someone else simply to get rid of him. Unlike the Milton Bradley debacle, if they cannot come out ahead financially in the deal, they will not make the deal. (And I understand we actually did come out a few million ahead in the Bradley Deal. But they simply had to get rid of him, at all costs. The fact that they regained anything in that deal still bewilders me).
Between the sheer sum of the deal, and the no-trade implications, and the utter unpredictability of the man, it cannot be said with certainty that Zambrano will not be a Cub to start the year. Just realize that, most likely, in what will be a relatively dull off-season, this is potentially Hendry's most splashy move.