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Love Letters: The Thome & Zambrano edition

Posted on: August 18, 2011 3:14 pm
 
Jim Thome. Carlos Zambrano. Discuss. ...

FROM: Jack M.
Re.: Thome's 600th HR, like his career, comes with class, style

I attended a charity auction in the Peoria area in the winter following the 2002 season. The organizers reached out to Thome, asking if he could attend. He said he couldn't, due to a prior commitment, but donated various autographed items to the auction. Then, on the night of the auction, he showed up unannounced about a half-hour before it began, donated a sizable check, and gave a short speech. After this, he went to the airport and flew back to his prior commitment -- being introduced as a member of the Phillies. The guy's whole life was changing, and he made time for a small auction back home. Ever since then, I root for Jim Thome -- even against my favorite teams.

I know there are those who say, bottom line, it's about what they do on the field. And that's true. But watching a class act like Thome join the 600 club sure is more fun than watching a miscreant who can barely squeeze his enlarged head through the front entrance to 600.

FROM: Jay

Greetings! The difference between the Big Zero and Jim Thome, there is a reason why I cannot support certain players. And for the Union to file a grievance? The Big Zero CLEANED OUT HIS LOCKER. One may say that was done in the Heat of the Moment but, having played COLLEGIATE baseball, do you realize just how long it takes to do that ? The Big Zero has earned his nickname, and I wish the spoiled little child well with whatever he does in life.

You must be hell on wheels at the dart board, your points are so accurate. And very magnanimous to wish Zambrano well, by the way.

FROM: Wayne A.

Scott: If you check the background of Jim Thome, I believe you will find he went through high school at Limestone H.S. in Bartonville, Ill., which is across I-474 from Peoria. Almost everyone says he is from Peoria. If I am incorrect on this matter please correct me.

I checked, and you're right. Apologies to good ol' Limestone/Bartonville. I expect to see a Paul Bunyan-like statue of Thome there one day.

FROM: Tom
Re.: After yet another Zambrano meltdown, will Cubs learn lesson?

ZOOM-brano -- the Jim Piersall of this decade. Haven't we all seen enough of this emotional infant? A bowel movement with teeth is what he is.

Oh, man ... hold on ... I'm still doubled over in laughter ... I'll get to an answer in a moment. ... hahahahahaha.

FROM: Terry F.

I don't think that Z should be on the DQ List. This isn't really about Zambrano. He is what he is. This is about the Cubs. I agree with you in that they need to pay him whatever they owe him and move on. They supported him in his first fight, which was a mistake. When the second fight occurred, or perhaps before as there were plenty of other incidents like throwing the umpire out, they should have traded him or released him. Zambrano is responsible for his own actions, but the Cubs deserve far more blame than Zambrano this time, because they knew what they were dealing with and they let it happen.

Really hard to argue against those well-reasoned points. Cubs, your move.

FROM: Dan

Scott,

Well done. Great article. However, it's not so easy cutting loose a guy making that much cabbage knowing you're NOT going to get ANYTHING in return. Are you forgetting the Cubs had two extensive injuries in their starting rotation this year? They even tried trading Carlos before the deadline. They even put him on waivers. NOBODY claimed him. Nobody wants him. The Cubs best hope is Carlos really does retire so it voids the contract. The very last thing the Cubs will do is let him go via release and by suggesting that, you don't know as much as you think you do.

Yeah, the Cubs never should have extended him in the first place. But if you remember, at the time of his extension, MANY teams would have paid top dollar for him based on his numbers. He was one of the top pitching free agents out there that year. The Cubs best solution is to do what they did. Let him sit for a month and NOT pay him. Let things cool off. See what he says in a month. If he retires? Awesome. If not? Move him to the Restricted list so he doesn't pitch again this year and try once again to move him in the offseason. If by Spring Training he's still hanging around like a snot, THEN you release him.

Cabbage. Love the term. And you're right, Zambrano is making so much cabbage even Peter Rabbit would be exquisitely jealous -- and better behaved.

FROM: Dorothy B.

He should be fired. I didn't watch all the game, but figured with that many home runs against him, he'd throw a fit and he did.

See? If you can see these things coming, why can't the Cubs?

FROM: Gary

I know he's a f------ nut, but why was he still in the game after giving up five homers?

Legitimate characterization of the Big Z(ero), and legitimate point regarding the Cubs.

FROM: Dan S.
Re.: Weekend Buzz: Giants need to fix their puny offense

Understand your column about Giants offense, but on the other hand they have three people in the ERA leaders and one at 3.5. Their game is low scoring, if they keep the opposing team in the game then they have a chance. If they had an offense like Cincy, for example, and score seven to eight runs but the pitchers give up eight or nine, what good is the high scoring offense? Sure it would take pressure off their pitchers to get four runs early.

Valid points, and we see the troubles the Reds are having. But isn't there a middle ground somewhere the Giants could find? The best argument right now is how banged up they are.

FROM: Frank

Scott,

You're right on target. As a longtime Giants fan, it's really frustrating to see such futility at the plate. Outside of maybe Sandoval and Schierholtz, all the rest are hitting well below their career avg's. Belt could be a spark...two dingers [the other day] in Florida was a good start.

The Giants need a few new Belt loops.


Likes: The season Michael Young is having for the Rangers. ... Merle Haggard's take on Texas manager Ron Washington's lovely phrase, "That's the way baseball go." It's now a Haggard song, and you can download it on iTunes. The money goes to Rangers charities. ... Modern Family. Terrific characters and snappy writing. ... Steve Earle's book I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive. Very entertaining read, with lots of colorful, skid-row characters. Let's just say one of the main characters is a junkie doctor who helped country legend Hank Williams score dope and may have been the last person to see Williams alive (fiction, this book is fiction). Earle's CD of the same name is terrific, too -- especially the track Waiting For the Sky to Fall.

Dislikes: Being a captive audience to merchants on the other side of the airport security screening and paying something like $12 for a small "breakfast" to go at Starbucks. Highway robbery is what it is. In this crappy economy and in these days in which airplanes have scrapped food, that's got to be a great business to go into: Running a food shop between the security screening and the flight gates. I imagine those people all live in mansions, with servants, eating prime rib and lobster every evening.

Rock 'N' Roll Lyric of the Day:

"Kiss a little baby
"Give the world a smile
"And if you take an inch
"Give them back a mile
"'Cause if you lie like a rug
"And you don't give a damn
"You're never going to be
"As happy as a clam"

-- John Prine, It's a Big Old Goofy World
Comments

Since: Aug 4, 2011
Posted on: August 18, 2011 3:36 pm
 

Love Letters: The Thome & Zambrano edition

thome is coming back to phillySmile


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