From Carrie Muskat of MLB.com comes word that the Major League Baseball Players Association field a grievance against the Cubs this evening on behalf of right-handed starter Carlos Zambrano.
Zambrano was placed on the disqualified list and docked 30 days of pay after walking out on his Cubs teammates following a blowout loss to the Braves last Saturday. He’s already apologized publicly for his actions, and is hoping that the Cubs will lighten the punishment originally levied against him.
If the team-issued 30-game suspension holds up, Zambrano could lose a total of $3 million in salary.
The MLBPA is not expecting an immediate ruling, as the length of the grievance process can vary.
Zambrano, 30, had registered a 4.82 ERA, 1.44 WHIP and 101/56 K/BB ratio through 145 2/3 innings for the fifth-place Cubs. He is under contract in 2012 at $18M and carries a $19.25M vesting option for 2013.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Mets aren’t looking for long-term investment pieces in a trade for right-hander Noah Syndergaard, per unnamed sources. Instead, any deal the club makes will likely center on players who can make a difference for them in 2019 as they attempt to rise from last year’s fourth-place finish in the NL East and make a run at the postseason.
The 26-year-old starter has been a fixture of the Mets’ rotation since he got his start in the majors in 2015. Despite missing nearly the entire 2017 season with a torn lat muscle in his throwing arm, he returned to pitch his third full season in 2018 with a winning 13-4 record in 25 starts, 3.03 ERA, 2.3 BB/9 and 9.0 SO/9 through 154 1/3 innings and finished the year with his first complete game shutout, to boot. After receiving a $2.975 million salary in 2018, he’s slated for another three years in arbitration before entering free agency in the 2022 season.
So far this offseason, the Padres have been the only team linked to the righty, though they didn’t come close to completing a trade when they first inquired about him back at the July deadline. If the Mets are serious about dealing Syndergaard, as Rosenthal seems to suggest, they could very well look at acquiring another couple of arms to round out their rotation. Assuming Syndergaard is moved this winter, the team will enter 2019 with right-handers Jacob deGrom and Zack Wheeler, lefties Jason Vargas and (the oft-injured) Steven Matz — and relatively little depth behind the four.