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Community Projection: Barry Zito

The community projections feature is always a wildly popular one at this site*. By wildly popular, of course, I mean it's usually a death knell for all discussion. That's okay. Because if we don't venture a guess as to what Mark Sweeney is going to hit in 128 at-bats this season, who will?

Fringe players will have to wait, though. I learned my lesson by assuming Brad Hennessey was going to make the rotation out of the spring last season. This batch of preseason predictions will start off with a bang. I've changed my delivery, as it were.

Barry Zito

ERA: 3.40
IP: 220
K: 149
BB: 78
HR: 21

Also, Hilary Duff Jokes made by me on this site: 0. But if I were in an elevator with Zito, I'd have no choice but to ask, "So, Barry, how's the water down in Duff Gardens?" Absolutely no choice.

I'm a Zitoptimist, at least in the short-term. The declining K/9 and K/BB walks have to cause concern, but they are only one or two horsemen of the apocalypse. A lot of his success has to do with deception, and coming to a new league is going to help a bunch. The hitters in the NL are much weaker to begin with, and the....

Yeah, I have no idea how he'll do. If he puts up an ERA over 4.00, a little piece of me will die. I predict an ERA under 3.50 because I want to. There is some logic and reason to back it up, but I also know this will probably be the projection with the most community disagreement.

Comment starter: Really, you can't talk smack about the contract later if you don't put your prediction down now. You also can't tell the Anti-Zitonians to step off later without a prediction now.

* Source: Gallup, 2006, Study of Sick Freaks Who Have Spent More Than Five Seconds in Their Life Pondering Randy Winn's Potential On-Base Percentage