In change of heart, Carlos Zambrano says he’ll waive no-trade clause

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Although he would prefer to remain a Cub, Carlos Zambrano told FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal that he’d be willing to waive his no-trade clause if presented with a deal this summer.

“I’ve heard rumors,” he told FOXSports.com. “I’ve already talked to my family. They said, ‘It’s OK. If you think it’s good for you, if you feel you want to be traded, do it.’”

Unlike Michael Cuddyer, Zambrano has full no-trade protection under the terms of his five-year, $91.5 million deal with the Cubs.  He’s owed about $10 million over the rest of this season and $18 million in 2012.  They’re a $19.25 million option for 2013 on his deal, but that will only vest if he finishes first or second in the Cy Young vote this year or in the top four next year.

Zambrano, who refused to discuss the possibility of a trade last season, didn’t necessarily say that he’d be willing to go anywhere.  However, he doesn’t want to stay where he isn’t wanted.

“If they come to me and want to trade me, obviously it’s because they don’t want me here anymore,” he said. “I always say that. I’ll be here until the Cubs decide to trade me.”

Zambrano has been linked to the Yankees on several occasions, though Rosenthal hears the Bombers have only minimal interest in him.  The Yankees might actually prefer Zambrano’s teammate, Ryan Dempster, as a trade target.