Emotional righthander Carlos Zambrano flipped out big-time Wednesday to earn his ejection from a 5-2 Cubs win over the Pirates, but it was not his worst tirade, according to Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune.
Sullivan ranks Zambrano's antics on June 2, 2007, as his worst. That was when the pitcher punched catcher Michael Barrett in the face in the dugout, then resumed pounding his teammate in the clubhouse. Barrett had to be taken to the hospital. Sullivan regards it as "The White Album of all Big Z explosions."
Another infamous explosion by Zambrano came last season at Dodger Stadium, where he assaulted two Gatorade coolers and smashed a wall with a bat. Sullivan ranks that one No. 3, behind Wednesday's wig-out.
Yesterday, Major League Baseball suspended Zambrano for six games and fined him an undisclosed amount for his inappropriate and violent actions on the field.
"I should have more control of myself in that situation," Zambrano said.
Big Unit comes East
With one victory, Randy Johnson will become the 24th pitcher to win 300 games.
Ideally, the Big Unit would like to reach the milestone in front of the home folks in San Francisco, but the Giants will begin a 10-game road trip. He is not scheduled to pitch in San Francisco until June 13.
"I'd love to do it here in San Francisco in front of fans and the ownership," Johnson said after winning No. 299 Wednesday night. "Of all the trips we have to go on, it's got to be on the East Coast now."
Johnson's next start is scheduled for Wednesday in Washington.
What's going on?
Padres GM Kevin Towers admits he can't get a grip on the kind of team he has.
San Diego, which lost 99 games last season, has won 11 of its last 12 after losing 19 of 23.
"These last two years have been the most difficult for me in the sense of getting a pulse of the club," Towers told MLB.com. "Last year, I thought we made some moves adding pitching depth and would be better. Then we lost 99 games. But this year, I don't know. I still haven't figured them out."
Most pitchers would be satisfied after giving up three runs in six innings, with 11 strikeouts.
Not Johan Santana. What bugged Santana on Wednesday after the Mets' 7-4 win over the Nationals were the six walks, the most he had allowed in a game since July 22, 2002, when he walked seven while pitching for the Twins.
"It was crazy, like the weirdest game ever," Santana told the New York Post. "I felt good and was hitting my spots. There were some missed calls by the ump, things you can't control."