Giants’ Zito finds new Brewer to plunk
GIANTS 13, BREWERS 3
ANGELS 9, GIANTS 5
Well, it wouldn’t be spring training if Barry Zito didn’t hit a Brewer with a pitch.
The past two springs Zito plunked Prince Fielder with pitches (one intentional, one less-than-so). But with Fielder gone to the Tigers, Zito plunked Nyger Morgan with a pitch in the second inning.
Considering that Morgan is a much smaller target than Fielder, Zito’s control is clearly getting better.
“It was a curveball, so I mean sometimes you just throw through it,” Zito said of the pitch that plunked Morgan on the helmet. Morgan stayed in the game through the end of the inning, then left as a precaution.
Besides the hit-by-pitch, Zito gave up just one hit — an infield hit at that — no walks and one strikeout in three innings of work. He might have come out and pitched some in the fourth if the Giants hadn’t batted around for an eight-run inning.
Despite the solid results, Zito was mildly critical of his outing.
“I felt like I could’ve been better being down in the zone with the fastball,” Zito said. “If you look at strike ratio and how many balls were down in the zone, today was not as good as last game. But there were other positives today.”
Zito threw 30 of his 45 pitches for strikes, compared to 28 of 35 pitches for strikes last Tuesday.
Also, the Brewers’ lineup did not include the likes of Rickie Weeks, Aramis Ramirez or Ryan Braun.
Well, it doesn’t matter whose in the lineup, we’ll take three scoreless innings from Zito any day. And the plunking of the mouthy Tony Plush was just a bonus.
That makes consecutive scoreless outings from Madison Bumgarner, Matt Cain and Zito.
Now if we can get the Lincecum kid to come around ….
- 3B Pablo Sandoval went 2 for 4 with a double and home run in the Brewers game. He also whiffed twice.
- 2B Ryan Theriot got things going with the bat, going 2 for 2 with a double, walk and two runs.
- C Tommy Joseph continues to impress, going 2 for 3 with two home runs and 4 RBI. To read more on Joseph, click here.
- SS Brandon Crawford, who worked on shortening his swing in the offseason, continues to swing a hot bat, going 2 for 3 with a double, triple and 3 RBI.
- P Justin Fitzgerald gave up 3 runs on five hits in 2/3 of inning. The other six pitchers gave up no runs on four hits and no walks in 8 1/3 innings. They included Guillermo Mota, Sergio Romo, Steve Edlefsen and Hector Correa.
- The lineup in the split-squad at Tempe against the Angels was comprised mostly of younger players. But two veterans had nice games. 1B Aubrey Huff went 2 for 3 with a home run.
- Freddy Sanchez, playing DH vs. the Angels, went 1 for 3 with a run scored. Manager Bruce Bochy said Sanchez won’t play a game in the field until Wednesday at the earliest.
Brian Wilson will make his spring debut and pitch an inning as the Giants take on the Mariners in Scottsdale. Eric Surkamp will get the start for the Giants and Buster Posey is slated to catch four innings. He reported no soreness after catching two innings on Friday.