In Defense Of 2 Chicago Sports Idiots
Over the weekend, two of the big stars on the Chicago sports scene said some idiotic things. Surprisingly enough, Ozzie Guillen wasn’t one of them (I mean I’m sure Ozzie said a lot of stupid things, but I wasn’t paying attention to him). What I’m talking about are Zambrano’s “lazy” comment as well as Cutler seemingly throwing Hester under the bus for his interception on Saturday night.
“I’ve Been Lazy” -Carlos Zambrano
Let’s start with Big Z and the lazy comment. I am not going to argue that Z always does the smartest thing, but one thing he has is heart. This situation is a case of sportswriters and sports bloggers taking a quote out of context in order to drum up a story, however. The quote that had the media drooling over a chance to rip Z was “I’ve been lazy”. Obviously a quote like that jumps off the page, especially in a piece about Zambrano trying to rehab a bad back in the middle of a Cubs divisional race. If you read a little closer, you will see that in fact Zambrano has been anything but lazy, and not surprisingly, has just been stupid in his workout regimen.
“My problem is I’ve been lazy,” a contrite Zambrano admitted after his morning session. “There are things in life you don’t like to do, but you have to do them. I don’t like abs [abdominal muscles workouts] but I have to do them. I have to start doing them every day and be serious about it.
“I’ve got to be honest with me and with you [media] guys and the fans. I’m 28 years old, I’m not 16 anymore, I’m a big guy and I work hard every day [but] one of the things I don’t like to do is my abs, my core work.If I do abs every day and keep doing my job and be serious about my abs, I’ll be OK.”
That isn’t lazy at all. He works out hard everyday, which is more than we can probably say for most baseball players going through the grind of a long summer. He just hasn’t been intelligent about it. If working his abs is the main problem, then this is a case of him owning up to it and hopefully taking the initiative (a little late, but still) to fix the issue. My one main concern now is that based on Z’s entire quote, it appears to be a self-diagnosis. Hopefully the trainers are the ones that told him this, and he didn’t just come up with it on his own, though with Z you never know.
“Devin is more of a go-get it guy, he is not really a back shoulder or jump up and get it [guy]. You learn from it. We made some mistakes. It’s the first preseason game. Luckily enough, we have some time to correct them and keep going.” -Jay Cutler
Do I even need to explain why this quote is not a big deal? Sure, Jay should probably have kept his mouth shut and just taken the blame for a poorly underthrown ball. If anything, however, he seems to be explaining how he is learning the capabilities and ranges of his receivers. It seems he was under the mistaken impression that Hester was the kind of guy that would try to jump for a ball that was clearly underthrown, instead of watching the opposing team make an uncontested interception. The quote itself was barely fingerpointing anyways, but the major concern is that this is a sign of how Cutler handles himself in front of the media. He has clearly shown a tendency to blame others, and regardless of whether others are to blame or not, throwing your teammates under the bus is usually a poor decision. My point is, what he said may have had some truth to it, but that doesn’t mean it should be said (ironic advice from me of all people, but under the circumstances he should have just shut up).