SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. Barry Zito has one start and two sidesessions to figure out a way to compete. Hell do it against minor leaguers,not in the bright lights of the Bay Bridge exhibition series.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Zito would be held back topitch in a camp game Wednesday instead of facing the As at AT&T Park. Theclub needs Zito to reach his pitch count something he hasnt been able toaccomplish in either of his last two outings, which amounted to battingpractice.
BAGGARLY: Zito's 'momentum' hits a wall
Zito has a 7.91 ERA this spring and has allowed a whopping44 baserunners 32 hits and 12 walks in just 19 13 innings
In his last twostarts combined, Zito has lasted 5 13 innings and allowed 10 runs on 16 hits(10 extra-base hits) and five walks. He has one strikeout over that span and of34 batters faced, he only retired 12 without benefit of a tag play on the basesor a sacrifice.
After his abysmal start against the San Diego Padres onFriday, Zito pledged to look for answers the following morning. He spent a gooddeal of time Saturday throwing on flat ground out of his crouched delivery,with bullpen coach Mark Gardner actively supervising.
Zito is scheduled to start April 9 in the Colorado Rockieshome opener. The Giants dont have another choice because Ryan Vogelsong isscheduled to join the rotation as the No.5 starter on April 15, and rookie EricSurkamp has a strained flexor tendon.
Surkamp said he would be examined again Sunday and likelywould begin playing catch before the end of the week.
The Giants are searching for pitching outside the organization, but the supply is extremely low. When Houston recently released Livan Hernandez, it was a matter of hours before he agreed to a major league contract with the Atlanta Braves.
Right-hander Roy Oswalt remains a free agent, but his asking price has been high and several clubs, inlcuding the Angels and Cardinals, reportedly have maintained interest.