While fans at Wrigley Field have feared a Tippi Hedren incident occurring in the outfield, Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano would like to assure everybody that all is well with the influx of seagulls during later innings of home games.
“They are my friends,” said the eclectic hurler. “Sometimes I feel like they are the only ones who understand me … who don’t judge me.”
There has yet to be any interference in game play by the flock that’s taken a shine to Wrigley’s grass when Cub home games wind down, and that may be due to the interesting relationship between Zambrano and his feathered friends, who recently launched their own Facebook page.
“We have an understanding. I feed them after games, get them free entry to the park, and they give me superpowers,” he said. “I have been able to harness their powers. Their grace, their agility, amongst others. I can’t exactly explain it.”
The effect of the seagulls on Big Z is debatable. Zambrano is currently 2-0 on the season, but has looked sketchy at times.
“But that’s the nature of the seagull,” he said. “Easily frustrated, quick to react, short attention span. No animal is perfect.”
After home games, Zambrano spends several hours in the park frolicking amongst the birds and often sitting quietly, cross-legged in what appears to be a meditative state surrounded by them.
So what does his manager think?
“Hey, if it helps him keep calm on the mound, I’m all for it,” said Mike Quade. “I know [Cubs Chairman Tom] Ricketts isn’t a big fan of those things getting free admission, but like Carlos they really just eat garbage, help fertilize the grass, and bother Marlon [Byrd], ironically.”
Z also has some plans for these avian anesthetics.
“I’m teaching them to attack umpires and Tony La Russa on command, but right now they’re being stubborn and just trying to mate with Jeff [Samardzija]. They think he’s a girl bird.”
By Tim Baffoe