Though I’ve found no other confirmation online besides this, ESPN’s WMVP in Chicago is reporting this morning the Cubs have called a press conference to announce the signing of SP Carlos Zambrano to a 5 year, $90 million contract extension.

Zambrano’s had a rough time in his last two starts, and whether or not the ongoing negotiations have effected his performance of late might be a good question for this morning’s confab. But we can figure this much — after dropping some $300 million last winter on free agent acquisitions, the Cubs’ outgoing ownership have demonstrated they aren’t afraid to spend Mark Cuban’s money.

In all seriousness, surveying Zambrano’s production over the last few years, retaining his services at a price higher than that of Ted Lilly (yet substantially less than that of Barry Zito) is exactly what you’d expect a big market team that fancies itself a competitor to do. I think the psychic trauma over such a personality crisis should pass rather quickly for Cubs fans.

Full credit to the Arizona Diamondbacks, who earlier this week wasted little time in jettisoning Byung-Hyun Kim and Joe Kennedy, each of whom they’d acquired some 5 minutes previously.