Barry Zito is less than good. He's not better than not-that-good. He doesn't know where the ball is going, which means that it often goes over the plate, which means it often travels at great speeds and great distances. Remember: he's signed through 2938, too. He'll always be just bad enough to complain about, but just not-bad enough to keep on a roster. At this point, I'm more than a little tired of him.
The Giants had three hits. The Phillies had four home runs. This can't be all blamed on Zito. Well, most of the home runs can. The Giants almost didn't hit a home run at all, but Aaron Rowand hit a long start-earner into the Philadelphia night. It was probably a three-start-earner. Long and deep into the manager's subconscious. Other than that, though, the Giants offense was just as culpable.
Zito's still the story. The Giants' offense is always culpable. They're sociopaths. They can't help themselves. But the pitchers usually know better. Zito didn't chew up the bullpen, at least. That was a nice surprise. He just sort of gummed our confidence. It wasn't just a total Zito meltdown. It was a partial Zito meltdown, where the effects aren't fatal, but tend to seep into the water supply and food stuffs over a prolonged period of time.
This is still the Barry Zito we've watched over the past, cripes, four-plus seasons. He has good stretches, he has awful stretches. This isn't a surprise. But what is changing is our perception. The longer we have to watch this guy, the sicker we get of him. He's an 86 mph lefty without good command. It's aesthetically unpleasant.
I think I've come to a moment of clarity. He's pitched in 141 games for the Giants. That's how many licks it takes to get to the Zito Tootsie Pop, which had a crunchy layer of mild annoyance and a center of chewy disgust. I'm here. I'm tired of Zito. I'm officially through defending him as a league-average starter, though he certainly can be that kind of pitcher still. He could still be that guy. That has value. Haven't give up on that possibility, and if the Giants are paying him, he should still fill a rotation spot if there aren't five better starters ahead of him.
I just don't really want to watch it., and I wish we didn't have to. Get better, Jonathan.