The Miami Herald's Manny Navarro pointed out an interesting situation for tonight's game against the Atlanta Braves.
Zambrano has been made available out of the bullpen tonight.— Manny Navarro (@Manny_Navarro) July 30, 2012
He later confirmed what seemed to be the obvious situation: Carlos Zambrano has been moved out of the rotation and into the bullpen.
— Manny Navarro (@Manny_Navarro) July 30, 2012
#Marlins officially announce Carlos Zambrano has been moved to bullpen. He declined comment
Zambrano has been struggling for almost two months since his hot start to begin the year, so it is not all that surprising that the Marlins pulled the trigger on this move. Since the start of June, Zambrano has a 6.61 ERA and 5.62 FIP, primarily on the back of a hideous 16.5 percent walk rate. In those 49 innings, he has walked 40 batters and struck out only 36, so the move is totally understandable.
Wade Leblanc will move into the rotation to make the start on Wednesday, and with Leblanc pitching decently for the Marlins since he was acquired this offseason, the move makes the most sense. More importantly, the trade may be a harbinger of two other things to come by the end of this week.Despite all of Zambrano's struggles, the Marlins have been working on trading him to another team before tomorrow's waiver trade deadline. The move should be easier just because Zambrano is owed barely any money, as the Chicago Cubs are still covering the lion's share of his costs. But with two straight poor seasons in the books, you have to wonder if any team would give up even the fringiest of prospects for him. Nevertheless, the Marlins should be trying.
Also, with the Marlins having a few double-headers coming their way, it is very possible that top prospect Jacob Turner could show up by the end of this week when the Marlins begin their four-game set with the Washington Nationals. Zambrano moving out of the rotation can only help the chances of Marlins fans seeing Turner on Friday for one of the two double-header games.