Chicago Cubs: Carlos Zambrano and 5 Players the Cubs Need To Trade Soon

Matt CoanCorrespondent IIJune 28, 2011

Chicago Cubs: Carlos Zambrano and 5 Players the Cubs Need To Trade Soon

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    Whether Chicago Cubs ownership will admit it or not, the Cubs are in a rebuilding season.

    They currently have the second-worst record in all of baseball and third-highest payroll.

    Something has to change about the way this team is run and the way this team was built, and the first step in doing that is cleaning house.

    It's time for the Cubs to become sellers and move some of their more sought-after players to contenders for prospects who can help them down the road.

    Here are five Chicago Cubs players who need to be traded ASAP.

Honorable Mention: Alfonso Soriano

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    The Chicago Cubs would love to trade Alfonso Soriano, but it just can't happen.

    Soriano has one of the worst contracts in professional sports, and no team, not even the New York Yankees, would take that on—even if Soriano could bring decent power to their lineup.

    The Cubs are going to have to eat the remaining four years of Soriano's contract, which will not be fun.

Kosuke Fukudome

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    Kosuke Fukudome is another Chicago Cub with a huge contract, but can at least produce at a decent rate.

    Fukudome has been a solid leadoff hitter for the Cubs this season and has been one of the very few bright spots on the team.

    Fukudome is a patient hitter who gets on base and can drive in some runs. He could be a help to someone chasing a division title.

    It wouldn't take much for the Cubs to trade Fukudome, and it would be best if they could just get his contract off the books.

Jeff Baker

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    Another one of the few bright spots the Chicago Cubs have had this season is Jeff Baker.

    Baker is a utility infielder who is batting .319 and would be a great addition to any team looking to make the playoffs.

    Baker can play almost any position in the infield and is having a great year offensively. He is also one of the only Cubs players who isn't overpaid, which makes him even more intriguing for a team trying to trade for him.

    The Cubs don't have any long-term plans for Baker and wouldn't have any problem parting ways with him to open up a roster spot for some younger guys.

Aramis Ramirez

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    Aramis Ramirez is supposed to be one of the best Chicago Cubs hitters, but he has had a disappointing season thus far.

    Ramirez is also getting paid way too much, but with his potential to hit for power and drive in runs, a team in need of hitting may take on his contract.

    Ramirez could be a guy who needs a change of scenery to really start playing well, and the Cubs should move him to get rid of his contract and maybe get something solid back for him.

Ryan Dempster

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    Ryan Dempster is a quality veteran pitcher and an even more quality person.

    Dempster could be a huge addition to a team in the short term—and long term even with a big contract.

    Dempster is always going to give 100 percent and is a very hard worker.

    His ERA is at 5.31 and he hasn't been great, but if he were added to a better team and dropped in the rotation, his numbers and production would increase.

    It's time for the Chicago Cubs to move on from Ryan Dempster and maybe get back solid prospects for their future.

Carlos Zambrano

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    Say what you want about Carlos Zambrano, but the man wants to win.

    Zambrano has built up a reputation as a hot-headed guy who is a bad teammate, but a lot of that is overblown.

    Zambrano plays with a passion for the game that is unmatched, and while he may do a few things that will make his manager cringe, he is also a great pitcher who would be a huge addition to any contending team.

    The Cubs need to trade Zambrano and restart the team. The core that is in place is old and overpaid and will never come close to a World Series.

    The Cubs have a very nice crop of young players to build their future around, and hopefully build it the right way.