Early bird Cubs news

If you were an early arrival at Fitch Park Saturday morning, you could watch Carlos Zambrano against hitters for the first time this spring. Big Z threw 25 pitches, facing five hitters. Not many made contact. Brad Snyder was one of the hitters. “I was just trying to not blow out an oblique,” Snyder said. “It was more for him than for me.”

Also, as of early Saturday, Carlos Marmol had not talked to officials with the Dominican Republic team regarding the World Baseball Classic. Marmol is not sure he wants to pitch, especially after Lou Piniella told him that Kevin Gregg, who is competing for the closer job, will be in camp throwing 98 mph. Piniella was joking but Marmol said, “That scared me.”

— Carrie Muskat

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