Ozzie Guillen, manager of the Chicago White Sox, and Carlos Zambrano, starting pitcher for the Chicago Cubs, have much in common. They both hail from Venezuela; they both have a great sense of humor; and they both have found themselves in the news for all the wrong reasons all too often. But it's a new year and Ozzie and Big Z are seemingly intent on starting things off on the right foot -- or at least a charitable one. Here's what's up:â†µ
Ozzie on the hot seat. As mentioned in the Starting Lineup a day or two ago, Ozzie will be roasted this month at an event sponsored primarily by local sports radio station WSCR-670 as well as a number of other local businesses. The roast will take place at Belvedere Banquets and Events in Elk Grove Village on Jan. 21. Tickets are $100 each and available to only those 21 and over.â†µ
A percentage of ticket sales will go to the Ozzie Guillen Foundation to benefit Children With Cancer. The roast will last five hours and attendees will enjoy an open bar for four as well as appetizers, a three-course steak dinner and dessert. To buy tickets, call 312-729-3936.â†µ
Big Z in the booth. The 26th Annual Cubs Convention is a little more than a week away and, if you need another reason to attend, how about the opportunity to visit the Big Z Foundation booth? (As of this writing, individual passes are sold out but hotel room packages that include passes are still available.) Right-handed hurler Zambrano launched the foundation about a year ago (and apparently updating its website hasn't been a high priority) to help those in need in Chicago and around the world.â†µ
At the moment, the organization is focusing on orphaned children in Guatemala and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Chicago, according to Carrie Muskat of cubs.com. (Muskat also reveals that Big Z and his wife are currently trying to adopt a boy from Guatemala.) Make a donation at the booth and you'll get a free t-shirt. You can also enter a raffle for souvenirs presumably related to Carlos and/or the Cubs.